Australian jailed for ‘thrill’ killing of Chinese student

Agence France-Presse in Sydney
30 June 2010

A man who murdered a Chinese student in Australia was on Wednesday given a life sentence for the brutal attack, which the judge described as a premeditated, ‘thrill’ killing of a complete stranger.

Stavros Papadopoulos, 22, pleaded guilty to murdering 26-year-old University of Tasmania accounting student Zhang ‘Tina’ Yu in his Hobart apartment in June last year, reports said.

His accomplice, 22-year-old Daniel Jo Williams, was sentenced to 10 years in jail on a charge of manslaughter.

Tasmania’s Supreme Court heard that the men met Yu at a takeaway pizza shop in the early hours of the morning and had driven her to Papadopoulos’s apartment, The Mercury newspaper in Hobart said.

Over the next three hours, she was subjected to such terrible violence and sexual abuse by Papadopoulos that she pleaded to be killed quickly, it said.

After being repeatedly punched, thrown against walls and dragged around by her hair, Papadopoulos suddenly smashed a large concrete brick onto Yu’s head before undressing her, placing her in a bathtub and drowning her.

Williams, who had spent most of this time smoking cannabis, then helped his friend choke Yu in the bath before they placed her body in the boot of their car and dumped it in a river.

In sentencing, Justice David Porter said “little, if anything” had been put forward to explain Papadopoulos’ depraved behaviour.

“This was a brutal and terrible killing of a complete stranger,” he said.

“It was done with forethought and for the sake or thrill of doing it.”

The court heard that earlier on the night of the murder, Papadopoulos had told Williams he wanted to “kill and rape a bitch”.

Papadopoulos will have to serve at least 25 years before he is eligible for parole.

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