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Couple guilty of murdering adopted Chinese daughter


A Spanish court on Friday convicted a couple of drugging and suffocating their 12-year-old adopted Chinese daughter, in a case that has drawn the attention of Beijing.

Rosario Porto, a former lawyer, and her ex-husband, journalist Alfonso Basterra, had been accused of periodically drugging their daughter Asunta Yong Fang Basterra Porto with the sedative Orfidal for three months and finally strangling her in September 2013.

The child’s body was found in a wood near northwestern city of Santiago de Compostela, which is famous for being the final destination of the El Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route that has drawn Christians since the Middle Ages. A nine-member jury unanimously found the pair guilty of murdering Asunta, whom they had adopted as a baby, after a month-long trial in which they had insisted their innocence.

The couple could face up to 20 years in jail. The court will issue its sentence in a few weeks. Prosecutors charged that the murder had been planned by both parents, but carried out by the mother. They accused the parents of giving Asunta varying doses of Orfidal to test its impact on her before finally giving a strong enough does to knock her out so they could choke her to death with a rope without the girl being able to fight back. (AFP)