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Toxic Love Affair: Mistress Poisons Love Rival with Thallium

Manya Koetse

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September 16, 2014: Weibo netizens are feverishly discussing the ‘Anhui poisoning trial’ (#安徽铊投毒案#), a rare case in the southeast of China, revolving around a love triangle and a poisoning with the highly toxic substance thallium. The Anqing court found kindergarten teacher Ling Ling guilty of chemically poisoning the ex-wife of her lover. She was sentenced to life in prison. Netizens express their worries over the seemingly effortless way the convict was able to purchase thallium over the Internet. “This reminds me of the Tsinghua University Thallium poisoning case of Zhu Ling [1995]”, one netizen says: “how can thallium be purchased so easily?!” This is the third thallium poisoning case in China.


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Victim Pan Jingjing (left), her husband Awang and their child in happier times (picture: Sina 2014).
 

Pan Jingjing will turn 26 next month. She will not be able to celebrate, as the young woman has been in a vegetative state for over a year – the result of a two-time thallium poisoning in the presence of her ex-husband Awang and his girlfriend Ling Ling (pseudonym). Soluble thallium is highly toxic. Formerly, it was used in rat poisons and insecticides. Due to its historic popularity as a murder method, it is also known as “the poisoner’s poison”.

Although married to Pan, Awang got to know kindergarten teacher Ling Ling through the Internet in 2009, Sina reports. The two first became friends, and then developed a love relationship. Pan Jingjing discovered her husband’s extramarital affair in 2011. Although the couple soon filed for divorce, Pan Jingjing remained living in their family home and did not tell her family or co-workers of her divorce, while her husband and Ling Ling continued their relationship.

On September 2nd 2014, the Anqing court reasoned that Ling Ling’s main motive for poisoning Pan was to free herself of her lover’s ex-wife, who was still so involved in his daily life.

Ling purchased the toxic chemical thallium through the internet in April, 2012. She had invited Pan to join her and Awang for a hotpot dinner on April 17th. When Pan left the table to get some beer, she mixed the chemical in her drink. That same night, Pan Jingjing got sick with diarrhea, and later suffered from pain in her legs and hair loss. When doctors in Hefei (capital of Anhui) could not find the cause of her symptoms, she was diagnosed with a mental disorder. By the summer of 2012, Pan had gradually recovered. Ling and Awang were now officially married. Ling Ling poisened Pan with thallium for a second time in August 2012, by mixing thallium through her tea in a karaoke bar. This time, Pan found herself unable to walk and was admitted to the hospital in critical condition. Doctors later discovered traces of thallium in her system.

The judicial thallium case has now come to a close after two years. Although both Ling Ling and Awang were arrested as suspects in the poisoning case in 2012, Awang has now been acquitted of all charges due to a lack of evidence of his involvement. Ling Ling, who now has a baby with Awang, has been sentenced to life in prison.

A former colleague of Pan Jingjing has stated to the press that Pan had expressed doubts of being poisoned after initially getting sick in April 2012. Her colleague had been there when Pan directly asked her husband if he and his girlfriend had mixed medicine in her drink to harm her, as she remembered the presence of a white substance in her drink at the hotpot restaurant. “Nonsense,” her husband allegedly said: “That was just an ingredient of your drink.”

“What is happening to this world?”, says another netizen: “This morning I woke up to headline news about a woman who poured acid in her cheating husband’s mouth while he was sleeping… and this afternoon I read about this mistress poisoning the ex-wife. I guess it’s safer to stay single.”

“We must not underestimate thallium,” says commentator Su Li in online magazine ZJJZX: “This case really is about two keywords: ‘thallium’, and ‘online shopping’.” Su pleads for a stricter organization of the online shopping market and a serious restriction to the sales in toxic goods.

For Pan Jingjing, future stricter regulations of China’s online sales in toxic substances will come too late. She is currently still hospitalized and unable to speak.


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Pan Jingjing cannot move or talk, and needs constant care (picture by 163.com).
 

[box] This is Weiblog: the What’s on Weibo blog section. Short daily updates on what is currently trending on China’s biggest social medium, Sina Weibo.[/box]

Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, popular culture, and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

1 Comment

1 Comment

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    Ed Sander

    September 17, 2014 at 10:44 pm

    Mental disorder?! WTF?!

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China Local News

China’s Shulan City in “Wartime Mode” after Recording 13 COVID-19 Infections

Local authorities announced a “wartime mode” lockdown due to 13 new local coronavirus cases in Shulan.

Manya Koetse

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The city of Shulan in China’s Jilin Province is top trending on Chinese social media today after local authorities announced a “wartime mode” lockdown due to 13 new local coronavirus cases.

These are the first local infections in the entire province after a period of 73 days, China News reports, with other previous cases all being infections from abroad.

Last week, on May 7th, a female resident was the first to be tested positive for COVID-19. The city in northeast China is now the only place in the PRC to be marked as “high risk.”

One page on social media platform Weibo dedicated to the topic of Shulan going into “wartime mode” (“战时状态”) had received over 190 million views by Monday evening local time.

What does this “wartime mode” entail?
– All residents stay home, lockdown of residential compounds
– All public places closed
– Schools closed
– All public transportation suspended
– No more selling of fever-reducing medicine in clinics or stores

According to CGTN, a total of 290 people who have been in close contact with the infected patients have been traced and placed under medical observation.

For more COVID-19 related articles, please click here.

By Manya Koetse (@manyapan)
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China Local News

On Wuhan’s ‘Reopening Day’, Even Traffic Jams Are Celebrated

As the COVID-19 lockdown has ended in Wuhan, many people are happy to see the city’s traffic finally getting busy again. “I hated traffic jams before, now it makes me happy to see them.”

Manya Koetse

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It was chilly and grey in Wuhan when the coronavirus epicenter city went into a full lockdown on January 23 of this year. On April 8, 76 days later, it is sunny and twenty degrees warmer outside as people leave their homes to resume work or go for a stroll.

The end of the Wuhan lockdown is a special day for many, as the city finally lifted the 11-week-long ban that shut down all travel to and from the city in a radical effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.

On Wednesday, city residents returned to work as public transport started again. Roads, bridges, and tunnels were reopened, and the local airport resumed flights.

On Chinese social media, various hashtags relating to the Wuhan lockdown end have become popular topics. Using hashtags such as “Wuhan Lifts the Ban” (#武汉解封#), “Wuhan Open Again after 76 Days” (#武汉暂停76天后重启#), and “Wuhan Reopens” (#武汉重启#), the end of the coronavirus ban is a much-discussed news item, along with the spectacular midnight light show that was organized to celebrate the city’s reopening.

The Wuhan lightshow, image via Xinhua.

“Today has finally arrived! It’s been difficult for the people of Wuhan,” some commenters write.

According to China’s official statistics, that are disputed, over 3330 people have died from the new coronavirus since its outbreak; 80% of these fatal cases were reported in Wuhan. On April 6, authorities claimed that for the first time since the virus outbreak, there were zero new COVID-19 deaths.

Some state media, including People’s Daily, report that the reopening of restaurants and food shops is going smoothly in the city, as people – for the first time since January – are back to buying pan-fried dumplings and noodles from their favorite vendors.

Meanwhile, the fact that the traffic in some Wuhan areas is back to being somewhat congested is something that is widely celebrated on social media.

Some call the mild traffic congestions “great”, viewing it as a sign that the city is coming back to life again after practically turning into a ghost town for all these weeks.

“I hated traffic jams before, now it makes me happy to see them,” one Weibo commenter writes.

“I won’t complain about congested traffic again, because it’s a sign the streets are flourishing,” another Weibo user posted.

While netizens and media outlets are celebrating the end of the lockdown, several Chinese media accounts also remind people on social media that although the ban has been lifted, people still need to be vigilant and refrain from gathering in groups and standing close to each other.

For more COVID-19 related articles, please click here.

By Manya Koetse (@manyapan)
Follow @whatsonweibo

Spotted a mistake or want to add something? Please let us know in comments below or email us. First-time commenters, please be patient – we will have to manually approve your comment before it appears.

©2020 Whatsonweibo. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce our content without permission – you can contact us at info@whatsonweibo.com.

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