DA Vance: Man Sentenced to 19 Years-to-Life for Murdering His Sister

June 20, 2018

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of CHUEN LAU, 60, to 19 years-to-life in prison for brutally murdering his sister, Mei Lin Liu, in the Chinatown apartment they shared. On January 17, 2018, the defendant pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to the sole count in the indictment against him: Murder in the Second Degree.

“Chuen Lau brutally murdered his own sister in a vicious act of domestic violence, stabbing and beating her to death in the apartment they shared before fleeing the scene,” said District Attorney Vance. “Ms. Liu was a beloved mother, sister, and aunt – and while this sentence cannot bring her back, I hope it brings a sense of closure to her loved ones.”

As detailed in court documents, statements made on the record in court, and the defendant’s guilty plea, LAU shared an apartment with Ms. Liu on Eldridge Street between Broome and Grand Streets in Chinatown. Between the evening of May 15 and the morning of May 16, 2014, LAU attacked Ms. Liu, stabbing and striking her more than 20 times on her face and body, killing her. The defendant then fled the apartment and rented a room at the US Pacific Hotel on the Bowery.

On May 17, 2014, another family member grew concerned when she was unable to reach Ms. Liu and contacted the FDNY to gain access to the apartment. Upon entering the apartment, she discovered the body and called police. LAU was arrested the next day at his hotel and admitted to getting into a verbal argument with his sister, which turned physical, following a series of personal and financial disputes.

Assistant D.A. Samuel David handled the prosecution of the case with former Assistant D.A. Evan Krutoy under the supervision of Assistant D.A. Lanita Hobbs, Chief of Trial Bureau 80, and Executive Assistant D.A. John Irwin, Chief of the Trial Division. Paralegal Joshua Pereira and the office’s Video Unit assisted with the case.

District Attorney Vance thanked the NYPD, specifically Detectives Michael Fierro and Laureano Rivera of the Manhattan South Homicide Squad.

Defendant Information:

CHUEN LAU, D.O.B. 5/29/1958

New York, NY


  • Murder in the Second Degree, a class A felony, one count


  • 19 years-to-life in prison