Mystery of missing Chinese scholar shakes up Illinois school

Ronggao Zhang center father of missing Yingying Zhang listens as he joins from left Yingying's best friend Yige Yang aunt Liqin Ye and boyfriend Xiaolin Hou far right for an interview at The News Gazette in Champaign Ill. on Thursday June 22

Zhang's father, aunt and boyfriend traveled to the central IL school and are staying in university housing as the search continues. Earlier this week, at a forum on the U of I campus, Federal Bureau of Investigation officials said the case is a top priority nationwide.

The June 9 disappearance of Yingying Zhang (ying ying zhawng) is being treated as a kidnapping.

The father of a Chinese scholar visiting the University of IL made a heartfelt plea for his daughter's return as Federal Bureau of Investigation ramped up its search for the missing woman. On that same day, she was last seen on a surveillance video getting into a black Saturn at Clark and Goodwin in Urbana.

Family, best friend and boyfriend of missing, visiting scholar, Yingying Zhang, share their story during an interview with The News-Gazette on Thursday, June 22, 2017.

"Ying, be strong, Dad is waiting for you here", he said.


Jon Holloway, assistant special agent in charge of criminal investigation at the Springfield office, said the FBI's acting director and US field offices have been receiving updates in the case regularly.

Representatives from University of IL police and a campus counseling center were scheduled to meet with students to discuss the search for Yingying Zhang - though police said they wouldn't divulge details of the ongoing investigation. "We're not leaving without her". He said he couldn't disclose details about the ongoing investigation.

UIPD is seeking help in their search for Yingying Zhang, a visiting scholar.

Ronggao Zhang also made a new deal with the person who kidnapped his daughter.

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