In a recent development, Minliang Zheng, 50, has been extradited from Massachusetts to Queens, New York City, facing charges for allegedly shooting a woman over a financial dispute. Prosecutors claim Zheng was acting on orders to collect a debt owed by a male relative of the victim.
The incident unfolded earlier this year when Zheng reportedly shot the unidentified woman outside her Flushing home at approximately 12:30 p.m. on March 19. This attack followed weeks of Zheng allegedly threatening the victim’s 57-year-old sister and surveilling the residence.
Escalation of Events
Authorities describe a tense prelude to the assault, where Zheng is said to have trailed the victim to multiple locations on the day of the shooting. He purportedly waited outside her home before confronting her. The woman, shot in the leg, fortunately survived the encounter.
“The boss said to get the money,” Zheng allegedly told the woman before firing, as per prosecutors’ statements. He reportedly warned that he would target the entire family if the debt remained unpaid. The specific details surrounding the debt are still unclear.
Aftermath and Arrest
Zheng fled to Massachusetts post-incident but was apprehended on August 8. His extradition to New York occurred on Thursday, Nov. 2, leading to his arraignment on assault and weapons charges. Zheng pled “not guilty” and is currently held without bail, as indicated by public court records.
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz highlighted the gravity of the crime, stating, “The defendant shot the victim simply to settle a score. In this case, fortunately, the victim survived, and the defendant will now be held accountable. We thank the Massachusetts law enforcement community for helping to bring the defendant to justice.”
Legal Presumption of Innocence
It is important to note that these charges are accusations, and Zheng, like any accused person, is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
This case mirrors another recent sentencing in Queens, where two men were convicted for hiring hitmen in a 2019 murder outside a local karaoke bar, rooted in a business dispute.