Woman gets life for killing husband
2018-07-11 15:31:00

A Chinese woman was sentenced to life in prison for killing her British husband, and ordered to pay 150,000 yuan ($22,600) in compensation to his family, Shanghai No 1 Intermediate People's Court ruled on Monday.

Another case, which involves the custody of their children, is pending.

Michael Simpson, 34, an operations manager for British retailer Next in Shanghai, was fatally wounded in a scuffle with his estranged wife Fu Weiwei last year.

The two were married in 2009 but separated in 2015 without a formal divorce. Simpson then had a new girlfriend, surnamed Lin. On March 20, 2017, Fu and two friends confronted Lin with a knife in Simpson's apartment. Fu killed Simpson and wounded Lin.

The court also ruled on Monday that Fu must pay Lin 290,000 yuan in compensation.

The couple had a son, 8, and a daughter, 6, who were taken to live with Fu's parents in Xiangyang, Hubei province, after the incident. Both children hold British passports.

Their British grandfather, Ian Simpson, who has been flying between China and the UK during the case, said he is determined to get custody of his grandchildren.

He said he believed his grandchildren would have a better life in the UK.

"We know we can offer them the life that their father, Michael, intended. This would include education to a university standard, vacations throughout the world, love and care from a large family ... We would maintain their Chinese language development and make sure they stay in touch with their Chinese relatives," he said.

Fang Jie, a lawyer representing the Simpsons, said documents are being prepared for a separate civil case regarding custody of the children and a lawsuit will be filed soon.

"We have been negotiating with Fu on the custody of the children from the very beginning," Fang said.

Fang said the Simpsons were willing to offer forgiveness at court, which would reduce Fu's sentence, and waive the compensation in exchange for the children's custody, but the two sides failed to reach a settlement before the ruling.

Fu's lawyer, Yu Zhiwen, was reached by China Daily on Tuesday but declined to comment. The court told China Daily on Tuesday that Fu had said she wanted to appeal.

In an earlier report by Red Star News, a Chinese news organization, Yu said Fu would give up custody only if the Simpsons let the children come back to China to visit her once a year before they reach adulthood and set aside a fund of 550,000 yuan to cover the travel costs involved.

Source:China Daily Editor:Hiram