Officials in Beijing say the slaying of a DaimlerChrysler executive and his family last month was an isolated incident, rather than a warning to foreigners living in China.
Juergen Pfrang, his wife, his 14-year-old daughter and 12-year-old son were stabbed to death during a burglary on the night of April 2 at their home in a gated foreigners' compound in the eastern city of Nanjing. Pfrang was the deputy general manager of the Yaxing-Benz bus assembly plant in th enearby city of Yangzhou. He had been at the plant since 1997 and was one of 38 expatriate DaimlerChrysler praised Chinese authorities for the quick arrests of four farm workers soon after the killings.
Police said three of the buglars, who were armed with knives, had confessed to the slayings. They are likely to be swiftly executed. No explanation has been given as to why the burglars killed the family. General Motors said it had told its 170 expatriate employees of the killings but said the tragedy was 'not a case for panic or extraordinary measure.'
Crime has risen in China as economic reforms have pushed millions of people out of work. Thousands of young workers have migrated to the more prosperous cities of eastern China. But killings of foreigners are rare.