‘Depraved’: Foreign National Paid Money, Offered Sex, In Bid To Kill Lover’s Wife, Daughter, Feds Allege

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John Oyewale Contributor
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A female foreign national living in New York offered money and sex in a plot to have her lover’s wife and adult daughter murdered, federal prosecutors alleged Monday.

Yue Zhou, 42, a resident of Flushing, Queens, appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert M. Levy at the federal courthouse in Brooklyn to face murder-for-hire charges, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York.

Zhou “contracted with a Bitcoin exchange service in Ukraine to make a $5,000 Bitcoin payment to [a] hitman website” and completed the transaction via a Brooklyn middleman, prosecutors alleged according to a court document. Zhou also allegedly “provided detailed descriptions of [her lover’s wife], including her home, her work schedule, and the best times to target [her], so that, among other things, [her lover] would have an alibi for the murder.” The transactions allegedly happened between Mar. 25, 2019, and Apr. 4, 2019.

The website was “a scam run by a third party” having no actual hitmen for hire, the court documents revealed. Zhou suspected that only after completing the transaction, according to the prosecutors. She then allegedly threatened physical and sexual violence against the fake website’s administrator and his family. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Illegal Immigrant Mom Arrested For Trying To Hire Hitman Was Released From ICE Detention Years Ago)

Special agents with Homeland Security Investigations reportedly confirmed the cryptocurrency transaction.

Zhou also tried to add her lover’s adult daughter from a previous marriage as a second target victim in the plot with the fake hitman website, prosecutors alleged. Zhou allegedly messaged her lover’s daughter in Dec. 2019 thus: “warning: I will cut your body into hundred pieces if you guys still don’t take responsibilities. [sic] I know where you live. I watch you all time.”

Zhou reached out to her lover’s daughter’s neighbor Feb. 2021, offering $10,000 and sex to get the neighbor to murder Zhou’s lover’s daughter and dump the body in a lake, prosecutors additionally alleged.

Zhou was engaged in prostitution at a spa in Cheyenne, Wyoming in 2020 and 2021, including the time when she solicited the murder of her lover’s daughter, prosecutors told the court. Zhou allegedly had been involved in multiple such spas across the U.S., including in Maryland and Virginia.

Authorities reportedly arrested Zhou in a Virginia spa Jun. 5 and removed her to the Eastern District of New York Jul. 3.

Zhou, who “does not have permanent legal status” in the U.S., was a flight risk, prosecutors argued. Although she had no prior documented criminal history in the U.S., her involvement in the “depraved plot” to murder her lover’s wife and daughter “speaks volumes as to her characteristics,” according to the prosecutors.

Zhou faces lengthy prison time and removal from the U.S. if convicted, the court documents revealed.