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6.28.2017

FBI finds car linked to kidnapped Chinese student

Visiting scholar Yingying Zhang has been missing from the University of Illinois since June 9.



In Illinois, the FBI announced Tuesday that it had found the car that a visiting Chinese student was last seen getting into before she went missing from the University of Illinois nearly three weeks ago.

26-year-old Yingying Zhang, a visiting student in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences, was last seen June 9 near the north end of campus in Urbana-Champaign. She had just gotten off a bus and was apparently on her way to an apartment complex to sign a lease.

Security camera footage shows her getting into the passenger seat of a black Saturn Astra. The FBI says the vehicle appeared to be driven by a white male who circled the area before making contact with Zhang. The car is seen pulling up next to Zhang on the sidewalk just after 2:00 pm. She talks for several moments to the unidentified driver before getting into the vehicle. The car then drives away.

She has not been seen or heard from since.



Working from "numerous leads," the FBI announced it had located the Saturn, but the bureau refused to disclose where the car had been found or if it had identified the driver.

Authorities are treating the disappearance as a kidnapping. According to a recent news release from campus police, they have developed several additional leads and are still asking for the public's help.

Zhang is 5-foot-4 and weight 110 pounds. She was wearing a charcoal-gray hat with a white logo on the front, a white-and-pink flannel print long-sleeve shirt, a white undershirt, jeans, white shoes and a black backpack. She has shoulder-length brown hair and wears glasses. The car was last seen heading north on Goodwin Avenue.


The FBI is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information leading to the location of Yingying Zhang. Anyone with information is asked to contact the FBI's toll-free tipline at 1-800-CALLFBI (1-800-225-5324) or the Springfield Office of the FBI at (217) 522-9675.

More here: Mystery of missing Chinese scholar shakes up the University of Illinois