The suspect behind a quadruple homicide at an Oklahoma marijuana plantation was arrested in Florida and is now being extradited to Oklahoma.
State law enforcement said the man, identified as Wu Chen, 45, was arrested before 4 p.m. Tuesday after an automated license plate reader tagged his car in the Miami Beach area, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) said. announced on Facebook.
Chen was taken to Miami-Dade County Detention Center without incident on charges of murder and shooting with intent to kill and awaits extradition to Oklahoma.
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The incident occurred at a operation for growing cannabis in Kingfisher County, Oklahoma, on Sunday. Authorities said Chen entered the property around 5:45 p.m. and spent a significant amount of time at the marijuana plantation before executing the victims.
Authorities said “several associates” were present with the four victims – three men and a woman – when they arrived at the scene. A fifth victim was reportedly injured in the incident and flown to a hospital.
All victims were reported as Chinese nationals, with their names still withheld. In a Facebook messagethe OSBI said the next of kin’s notices were pending due to “a significant language barrier”.
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“The suspect was in that building for quite some time before the executions began,” the OSBI said in a press release on Tuesday. “Based on the investigation to date, this does not appear to be a random incident.”
Police said they already had the suspect’s identity prior to the arrest, but refrained from releasing the information because they believed it could put other individuals at risk.
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While police have yet to release any leads on the case, OSBI Captain Stan Florence claimed Chen knew the victims.
“They all know each other. I don’t know if they’re related, or if they’re colleagues, but these individuals were certainly, we think, all familiar with each other,’ said Florence.
The case, now under investigation with the help of the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control as a quadruple homicide, will “take some time to process,” Florence said, because “there’s a lot to unravel with this case.”
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In addition to the murders, Oklahoma authorities are also investigating the legal papers of the marijuana farm.
“Of course, being a marijuana farm, Oklahoma state law requires them to be licensed by the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority and us,” Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics spokesman Mark Woodward said.
“One of the things we look at is, was it obtained legally or was it obtained through fraud? So that will be part of our investigation.”
Meanwhile, Porsha Riley, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority, told the Associated Press that there is an active permit for a medical marijuana farm at the crime scene.
Other agencies assisting with the investigation include the US Marshals Western District Task Force, Oklahoma Highway Patrol and the Hennessey Police Department.
Featured Image via Cannabis Photos (CC BY 2.0)