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Malaysia charges Pakistani with US pastor's death

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 13, 2013 at 3:11 am •  Published: June 13, 2013
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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysian prosecutors filed murder charges Thursday against a Pakistani security guard arrested after an American pastor was found dead.

Police have said Rev. David Ginter died of asphyxiation in his home in a suburb near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's main city, on May 4. A neighbor found his body bound with cloth after his wife failed to contact him while she was visiting her home country of Australia.

Authorities initially detained seven suspects but filed charges Thursday only against 25-year-old Pakistani national Shahbaz, who uses just one name.

Prosecutors did not provide details of the murder charge, but police recently said robbery appeared to be the motive. The pastor's car had been reported missing from his house.

The charge carries a mandatory penalty of death by hanging for convictions. Police earlier this month said they were also looking for another Pakistani suspect.

A Kuala Lumpur magistrate's court scheduled a preliminary hearing for July 18.

Ginter was from outside Portland, Oregon, according to the website of his Bridge International Church in Kuala Lumpur. He came to Malaysia in 2010.