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Markham kidnapping victim Wanzhen Lu located, police focus shifts to suspects

Last Updated Mar 27, 2019 at 3:57 pm EST

York Regional Police say the four suspects who allegedly kidnapped Wanzhen Lu “did the right thing” by releasing him on Tuesday night.

In an update late Tuesday night, Const. Andy Pattenden said Lu was found in Gravenhurst when he knocked on the door of a home on Doe Lake Road shortly before 9 p.m., looking for help.

The homeowner told CityNews that he actually found Lu when he was on a walk with his dog. He said the dog began barking at something and he heard someone calling out from the street.

Lu explained that he had been kidnapped and homeowner took him inside and called 9-1-1. Officers from Ontario Provincial Police responded to the call and identified Lu.

Pattenden said Lu was suffering from minor injuries and was taken to hospital to be treated. Investigators have been in constant contact with Lu’s family who arrived in Canada on Monday night. They have been informed that Lu was found safe.

No further details about Lu’s injuries have been released and he has returned to York region to speak with investigators about the kidnapping.

Sgt. Pattenden added in another update Wednesday morning that investigators are keeping an open mind as to what happened in Wanzhen Lu’s kidnapping, but right now they are focused on finding the four suspects.

Watch the full police update below:

On Tuesday, police said a 35-year-old man from Toronto believed to be allegedly involved in the kidnapping was arrested. Pattenden said the man has been released unconditionally as there was not enough evidence for criminal charges to be laid, no further information will be released.

“We’re very concerned that they’re still out there and I can tell you the investigative efforts are far from over. We’re going to continue with this until those four suspects are found and brought into custody,” said Pattenden.

The first suspect is described as a male wearing a mask, blue pants and a black jacket. Another is described as a dark-skinned male, around six foot one inch wearing a black Canada goose jacket. The third suspect was wearing dark blue jeans with a jacket and is described as a dark-skinned male with a heavier build, around six-foot-two inches. The last suspect was wearing a green and yellow jacket with a hood.


Suspects wanted in kidnapping of Wanzhen Lu
Three of four suspects captured on surveilance footage wanted in the armed kidnapping of 22-year-old Wanzhen Lu. HANDOUT/York Regional Police.


Lu was taken from an the underground parking garage of a condominium building at 15 Water Walk Drive, in the area of Highway 7 and Birchmount Road, around 6 p.m. Saturday.

Three masked men, one armed with a Taser-like weapon, approached Lu and forced him into the van, police said. The victim was shocked several times with the weapon. A fourth suspect stayed in the van.

His girlfriend, who was with him at the time, was not harmed and immediately alerted condo security after the incident, who then called police.

On Monday, police said the black wheelchair accessible Dodge Caravan, believed to have been used in kidnapping, was found empty and without a licence plate.

Lu is Chinese student studying in Canada and lived in the condo building from where he was taken.

Police say they have yet to determine a motive for the kidnapping.