DULUTH, Ga. (TCD) -- Six people were arrested last week in connection with the death of a woman who had recently moved to the United States from South Korea believing she was joining a religious group but was held captive and starved instead.
Gwinnett County Police detectives allege 26-year-old Eric Hyun drove a silver sedan and parked it at the Gwinnett Place Drive location, which WAGA-TV reports is a 24-hour Korean spa.
Hyun then contacted a relative to pick him up and take him to an Atlanta hospital for "unrelated injuries." When Hyun and the family member got to the hospital, he reportedly asked the relative to "retrieve a personal item for him from within the vehicle."
The person returned to the car and found the body when he opened the trunk.
Detectives executed a search warrant at a residence on Stable Gate in Lawrenceville and recovered evidence. Investigators believe the crime occurred in the basement. Gwinnett Police shared photos of the basement and redacted several aspects of it due to visible blood.
According to Gwinnett County Police, the victim, who was not named, came to the United States to join a religious group called the Soldiers of Christ. The statement said she was "subjected to beatings and malnourished for weeks."
The Medical Examiner’s Office said the victim presumably died from malnourishment. She reportedly weighed 70 pounds when police found her body in the trunk.
In a news conference, Gwinnett County Police Cpl. Juan Madiedo said the victim was a female in her 20s to mid-30s and likely died at the end of August. Madiedo said she "might have been in the vehicle for a few days."
Gwinnett Police arrested Hyun along with Gawom Lee and Joonho Lee, both 26, 22-year-old Joonhyum Lee, 25-year-old Hyunji Lee, and 15-year-old Junyeoug Lee. They are all being charged with felony murder, false imprisonment, tampering with evidence, and concealing the death of another.