Stalker ‘breaks into online pal’s home, kills family and lives there for 3 days’

A man allegedly turned up at the home of a woman he'd met in an online game, stabbed her and her family to death and lived in their apartment for another three days.

Kim Tae-hyon, 24, is the suspect in the horror triple murder in an apartment in Seoul, South Korea.

He was found at the flat along with the bodies of three women on March 23 and was arrested and detained.

A Seoul district court on Sunday issued an arrest warrant for him on multiple murder charges, and the authorities have chosen to identify him in a departure from typical privacy protocols.

Kim is accused of stalking a 24-year-old woman he'd become enamoured with while playing an online multiplayer game in January.

She turned down his advances but accidentally revealed her address, according to the victim's friends.

The suspect allegedly posed as a courier and turned up at the flat where she lived with her family. He tricked her sister into letting him inside and stabbed her to death, police said.

He then ambushed and stabbed the woman's mother when she returned home five hours later, before finally killing the woman he'd been stalking when she finally came home.

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For the next three days Kim reportedly stayed in the flat, cooking and helping himself to the family's supply of beer.

He also tried to erase his mobile phone data and engaged in self-harm before cops arrived at the home, having been contacted by friends of the dead women concerned about their disappearance.

Kim was treated in hospital and after several days confessed to the murders, police said.

Officers added they would be seeking the help of mental health professionals to determine the suspect's psychological state. They suspect he had "meticulously premeditated the crime" by planning it for months.

The grisly murders come as South Korea passed new legislation toughening up laws around stalking. From September, serious offenders could be jailed for five years or fined up to 50 million won (£32,000).

However women's rights activists say there's a serious loophole in the new law, which states offenders can't be punished if their victims want them to be pardoned.

"This is a serious loophole as the new law failed to take into account the possibility that offenders may threaten victims and their relatives into expressing a wish to pardon them, while the victims are afraid of retaliation from offenders," said spokesperson Lee Su-yeon of the Korean Women Lawyers Association.

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