Chinese Police Suspect Murder in Death of Canadian Model

A young Canadian model was found dead in her Shanghai apartment building this week, and police said Wednesday they suspect she was murdered.

An official in the news department of Shanghai's Public Security Bureau said that police got an emergency call early Monday about the death of Diana O'Brien. Police said she was 23, though media reports in Canada have said she was 22.

The official, who gave only her family name, Fang, gave no further details on O'Brien's death.

Police said O'Brien entered China on June 24. She was working for a Shanghai-based modeling company, JH Model Management.

The Web site for JH, which says it is "one of the leading modeling agencies in the East of China for over 100 models," has not been accessible since Tuesday evening.

A young man who answered the door Tuesday night at the address the agency gave on its Web site said he didn't know of any modeling agency there. The apartment is in a high-rise building complex where several apartments have been converted into offices.

A statement from Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada said consular officials in Shanghai were told of O'Brien's death on Monday and that Canadian officials are in regular contact with the Chinese authorities conducting the investigation.

The statement from spokesman Andre Lemay, citing Canada's Privacy Act, said no further information could be released at this time.