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Mississauga man on trial for murdering roommate denies killing her but admits to disposing of body

Shaofeng Han told a jury Aug. 4 that on Dec. 5, 2017, the night he found his roommate in the Mississauga townhouse where they both rented rooms, he didn’t call 911 or try to revive her because he knew she was dead and he was scared.

The roommate — 40-year-old Yungying Pan — was bloody and unconscious, lying face down near the bottom of a staircase.

Instead, he decided to clean up the crime scene, dispose of her body and lie to police, fearful he would be the prime suspect in her murder, given he was the only other occupant in the home.

“I did not kill Ms. Pan but I know there are a lot of cases (where) the one who reported to police ended up being treated as the killer, being convicted and executed and that’s why I dare not let police know the truth,” said Han, 55, through a Mandarin interpreter.

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Han explained he had been watching videos in his room with a headset on and discovered Pan when he went downstairs. He said he ran down and said “Ms. Pan, Ms. Pan,” but there was no response. He said he saw the back door on the main floor open and went over and closed it.

“Wouldn’t your first thought be, before ‘how do I get myself out of this disaster,’ be ‘better call the ambulance quick?’” asked assistant Crown prosecutor Brian McGuire.

Han said his first thought was to call police, but believing she was dead, he was afraid about how it might look, and remembered a number of cases of wrongful conviction from China.

Han decided to put her lifeless body in a suitcase and dispose of it. He got into his Toyota Corolla and began driving.

“I wanted to find a proper place to leave this suitcase, somewhere nobody knows,” he explained, saying he went to Scarborough and left the suitcases in the bushes beside the road.

He testified he went back a few days later and moved the suitcase to Oakville. He later returned believing that location was not safe and drove it into a wooded area behind Dewey College in Mississauga. “I purchased a shovel from Canadian Tire and then I buried it,” Han said.

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Han also admitted to disposing of Pan’s bloody shoes, the keys to her Lexus SUV and the dash camera from the vehicle. He said he drove the Lexus to the parking lot of Square One to make it look like she had disappeared.

Han was arrested nearly two months later and charged with second degree murder, but he told police he knew nothing about Pan’s disappearance. Only 16 months later, On March 29, 2019, did Peel police find human remains belonging to Pan near Matheson Boulevard and Kennedy Road.

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Defence lawyer Lydia Riva asked Han how he felt in the days after his roommate’s murder.

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“I was very terrified. I put a screwdriver under my pillow to protect myself. I also kept a cleaver and a hatchet in the trunk of my car,” Han explained, suggesting some of the people Pan hung out with were dangerous.

When asked if Han had ever shown a romantic interest in Pan, he said he once had a conversation with her when she said she was looking for a boyfriend. “She said ‘any kind of boyfriend is fine’. She said she is even looking for an old guy. Then I asked her jokingly and chuckled, ‘if any kind of boyfriend is fine, then how about me?’ She said ‘are you giving me money?’ So I realized in order to be her boyfriend, I have to give her money. And then I say, ‘I will not give you money, I was just joking,” he recalled.

The Crown suggested a possible motive for the murder might have been Han’s romantic interest in Pan, and that she rebuked his advances.

Han testified he felt awful about disposing of the body. “At the time, I was fearful. I feel sorrow about it. Besides, I feel very guilty about lying to the police officer, however, under those circumstances, I think I don’t have any other options. I did not kill Ms. Pan.”

McGuire suggested the reason Han repeatedly lied to police about what happened to Pan is because he didn’t want to look like a killer, though he did everything a killer might do. “You cleaning up the crime scene was to protect yourself. Putting her lifeless body in a suitcase and stuffing it in your trunk was done to protect yourself. Is it your evidence that you never thought your actions would frustrate the police investigation into Ms. Han’s murder?” asked McGuire.

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Han replied, “I never thought that way.”

The trial continues.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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