China's 'Jack the Ripper' sentenced to death

Gao Chengyong attends a trial at the Intermediate People's Court in Baiyin, Gansu province, China on July 18, 2017.
Gao Chengyong attends a trial at the Intermediate People's Court in Baiyin, Gansu province, China on July 18, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (Reuters) - A Chinese court sentenced a 54-year-old man dubbed the country's "Jack the Ripper" to death on Friday (March 30) for the rape and murder of 11 women and girls over the course of 14 years, state television reported.

Gao Chengyong, 54, was tried for multiple counts of homicide, rape, robbery and mutilation of corpses, according to the state television's English channel.

He admitted to killing the 11 people between 1988 and 2002 in northwest China's Baiyin city in Gansu Province and Baotou city in the northern region of Inner Mongolia, the report said. The youngest of the victims was eight years old.

Gao was arrested in August 2016 at his own grocery store following a DNA test stemming from an unrelated crime committed by one of his relatives, state TV said, ending a 28-year search.

Gao in 1988 murdered his first victim, a 23-year-old women at her home where he was trying to steal valuable things.

Gao went on to take 10 more lives in 14 years. The youngest among his victims was only eight.

Gao has been married for 30 years and has two sons. His family members were shocked when told of Gao's crimes.