US & Canada

Canadian Brian Dickson found guilty of webcam murder

Slain York University student Qian Liu's father Liu Jianhui and mother Zheng Yaru, right, arrive at court in Toronto 24 March 2014 Image copyright AP
Image caption Qian Liu's father and mother attended the trial in Toronto

A Toronto man accused of killing a Chinese student whose last moments were witnessed via webcam by her boyfriend has been found guilty of murder.

Lawyers for Brian Dickson, 32, had argued he did not mean to kill York University student Qian Liu, 23.

But prosecutors rejected his offer to plead to a lesser charge.

Liu was found dead on 15 April 2011, hours after her boyfriend saw her trying to fend off an attacker during their web chat.

Shortly after the verdict, Judge Anne Molloy sentenced Dickson to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Qian Liu was studying English at York University at the time of her death

Robert Nuttall, Dickson's lawyer, said his client had been "absolutely remorseful for a very long time".

"He didn't say anything. He just accepted the verdict," Mr Nuttall told the Associated Press news agency.

Liu's father wiped away tears as the verdict was read in court on Monday.

Liu and her boyfriend in China had been chatting on webcam in the early hours of 15 April 2011, when a man knocked on the door asking to use her mobile phone.

She let him into her basement flat and a struggle ensued for several minutes while the boyfriend watched helplessly.

The web chat was shut down, and Liu's laptop and webcam were taken from the flat.

Liu was found dead the next morning.

Dickson had lived in a flat in the same building as Liu, just outside the campus of York University

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