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Daughter 'killed mum', reported her missing nine weeks later

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by September 29, 2016 General

Police will allege “body in suitcase” murder victim Annabelle Chen was killed by her only daughter and her ex-husband at her Mosman Park home.

Father and daughter Ah Ping Ban, 65, and Tiffany Wan, 25, were charged with Ms Chen’s murder on Wednesday, nearly three months after 57-year-old Ms Chen’s body was found dumped in the Swan River on July 2.

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Police share details about Annabelle Chen

Police allege “body in suitcase” murder victim Annabelle Chen was killed by her only daughter and her ex-husband at her Mosman Park home.

Ms Wan, who lives in Melbourne, reported her mother missing more nine weeks after her death following an extensive police effort to identify her.

Police will allege Ms Wan returned to Perth in September and door knocked Ms Chen’s neighbours before reporting her missing. They will claim Ms Chen was murdered somewhere between June 30 and July 2.

Annabelle Chen's only daughter and her ex-husband have been charged with her murder. Annabelle Chen’s only daughter and her ex-husband have been charged with her murder. 

Ms Wan was in Perth visiting her mother on June 30 and, before she moved to Melbourne in 2011 to study, had lived with her mother in her Mosman Park home.

Mr Ban resides in Singapore and Malaysia but regularly visits Australia, police said.

Between 1996 and 2012, he had been a director of a company registered in South Perth. 

Ms Chen also has twin step-daughters, who are Mr Ban’s children, but Senior Detective Tom Mills said the family structure was complex.

Annabelle Chen's ex-husband and daughter were arrested over her murder. Annabelle Chen’s ex-husband and daughter were arrested over her murder. Photo: 9 News Perth

One of the step-daughters lived in Perth, while another lived overseas. 

Vehicles have been seized in relation to the police investigation with Mr Mills confirming he was confident a chopping board strapped to a scooter was used to transport Ms Chen’s body into the Swan River.

The suitcase found in the Swan River with the body inside it. The suitcase found in the Swan River with the body inside it. 

Senior Detective Mills added Ms Chen was a spiritual person who was private and enjoyed reading. She was born in Taiwan and moved to Perth with Ms Wan in the late 1990s or early 2000s following her divorce from Ms Ban.

Police clarified Ms Chen was never a member at Crown Perth, despite previous WAtoday reports alleging she was.

Mr Ban and Ms Wan appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Thursday and were remanded in custody to appear again next month.

Senior Detective Mills thanked police and the public for their ongoing assistance in the investigation. 

“I’d like to pay tribute to all the police officers who worked on this investigation, it has been a long and arduous task,” he said.  

“The public appeals that we made played a significant role in relation to locating specific evidence in relation to Annabelle’s death.”

KEY DATES IN THE MURDER OF ANNABELLE CHEN:

June 30 – Ms Chen, who was born in Taiwan and lives in the affluent Perth suburb of Mosman Park, is last seen alive

July 2 – A fisherman on the Swan River finds a suitcase with a body and distinctive ceramic tiles inside

July 4 – Police make a public appeal for information about the body, including releasing a composite image and photographs of a suitcase, the tiles and clothing worn by the victim

July 6 – More of the tiles are found in the river

August 9 – Police renew calls for information about the mystery and release a photograph of a scooter with a timber cutting board tied to the tread, which may have been used to move the suitcase

August 22 – Police release several pictures showing variations to the original composite image

September 1 – Ms Chen is reported missing by her Melbourne-based daughter Tiffany Yiting Wan

September 5 – Ms Chen is identified as the body found in the river

September 9 – Tiles matching those found in the suitcase are reported in the media as matching those in a Mosman Park house Ms Chen formerly owned and lived in

September 14 – Police divers conduct further searches in the Swan River near the Fremantle Traffic Bridge

September 28 – Police complete their forensic examination of Ms Chen’s Mosman Park home. Wan, 25, and Ms Chen’s ex-husband Ah Ping Ban, 65, are charged with her murder

September 29 – Wan and Ban appear in Perth Magistrates Court and are remanded in custody to appear in Stirling Gardens Magistrates Court on October 26.

– with AAP 

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