Student missing for two weeks found in Shenzhen cybercafe

PUBLISHED : Friday, 14 September, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 14 September, 2007, 12:00am

A Hong Kong University of Science and Technology student who has been missing for more than two weeks was found safe in Shenzhen early yesterday.

A Shenzhen police official confirmed that 21-year-old Yin Riqiang, reported missing in Shenzhen last Monday, was found in an internet cafe at about 1am.

'A resident called the police after seeing a young man who looked like Yin in an internet cafe in Lo Wu district,' he said. 'We and the father went to the cafe immediately and found it was him.'

The third-year physics student, a Hunan native, left his home in Liuyang county, Changsha , on August 28 to return to Hong Kong to begin the new school year.

Yin called his family from Shenzhen two days later and told them he would soon cross the border. A schoolmate notified the university and Yin's family last Sunday that he had failed to turn up in school.

Yin's father, Yin Xiangyuan, went to Shenzhen and reported the case to police on September 6.

Last night Mr Yin said he received a call from his son at about 7pm on Wednesday night. He asked him to meet him at the Fu Rong Hotel in Shenzhen, where he was staying.

'He was in rags and dirty. He told me he had not had a shower for more than 10 days,' Mr Yin said, adding his son had lost around 10kg. 'He burst into tears once we met, and said: 'I'm sorry, father,' and then said nothing.'

The pair took a train back to Hunan at about 8am yesterday.

Mr Yin said his son was in bad mental shape and was resting at a relative's home. He had no idea whether he still had the HK$60,000 he left for Hong Kong with.

He said he appreciated the assistance of the police and the press and would give a full account of what happened in a few days.

Before leaving Shenzhen, Mr Yin notified HKUST that his son was safe. A university spokesman said: 'We are relieved that the student has returned safely.'

Chu Or, head of the Shenzhen office of the Hong Kong Federation of Trade Unions, said: 'His father called me this morning to say he had decided to take his son home because he needed some rest.'

Mr Yin initially believed his son may have run away because his academic results had slipped. But the family also feared he could have been kidnapped or robbed.