Hongchi Xiao, Chinese “slapping therapist” was arrested at a London airport in a joint operation between St George Local Area Command in Sydney and officers in the UK. Mr Xiao was wanted over the death of the young diabetic boy who allegedly died a few days after attending his alternative medicine seminars in Hurstville, NSW in April 2015. Emergency services found the Year 1 student unconscious and not breathing at the Ritz Hotel in Hurstville after the boy and his family left the workshop.

Police allege the boy was deprived of food and insulin during the course, run in Tasly Healthpac medical clinic. Prosecutors argue that his therapies were dangerous and led to this young boys death.


7 news reported that new Triple-Zero audio has been played in Court as he faced a manslaughter charge over the death of the seven-year-old diabetic boy.

The young boy died in 2015 after “healer” Hong Chi Xiao allegedly advised parents to take him off insulin, claiming that slapping and stretching would cure his diabetes.

The type-1 diabetic was found unconscious in the hotel, + paramedics attempted to resuscitate him.

Distressing audio of a witness’ call for help was played in court on Wednesday.

Triple-Zero operator: “Ok do you know if he’s awake?”

Witness: “No, he’s not awake.”

Triple-Zero operator: “Do you know if he’s breathing?”

Witness: “Uh, no, he’s not breathing.”

Triple-Zero operator: “… oh, he’s already passed I think, it’s not good.”

Xiao remains on trial for manslaughter, maintaining he did not have have a duty of care in allegedly advising the therapy.

The boy’s mother was in Court on Wednesday. She often had to compose herself, bursting into tears when a video of her son was played.

Members of the jury were seen wiping away tears with her.


Criminal charges involving violent crimes such as Murder or Manslaughter are homicides which are prosecuted under Section 18 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW)

Suffice to say murder as a crime is committed where the offender:

  • is of sound mind and discretion (i.e. sane);
  • unlawfully kills (i.e. not self-defence or other justified killing);
  • any reasonable creature (human being);
  • in being (born alive and breathing through its own lungs
  • under the Queen’s Peace;
  • with intent to kill or cause grievous bodily harm (GBH).

Prosecution of a murder charge may rely on the time of death following injuries inflicted on an individual – for example, if injuries were inflicted and the victim died more than three years following the injury.

Murder and manslaughter cases can be extremely complex – and it is vital to seek expert legal advice if there is a possibility of being charged with murder or manslaughter, including manslaughter charges brought as a result of causing death by dangerous driving.


An offence of Murder/Manslaughter is a strictly indictable offence and must be finalised in the District or Supreme Court.

Section 3 of the Criminal Procedure Act 1986 (NSW) provides that an ‘indictable offence’ is: An offence (including a common law offence) that may be prosecuted on indictment.

An indictment is a formal document that the prosecution files with a court to commence proceedings usually in the District Court or Supreme Court.

The nature and elements of the offence of Murder were considered in Penza v R [2013] NSWCCA 21 at [167]. Here is was said;

The act causing death should be identified by the Crown and the judge should direct the jury accordingly. The Crown must also prove that it was a voluntary or willed act of the accused or his or her accomplice: This may, in an appropriate case, require the jury to determine whether there was a voluntary act of the accused, for example where the accused asserts that the discharge of the weapon was an accident. In this regard there is a distinction between a voluntary act and an intentional one.


The offence of Murder is contained in Section 18 of the Crimes Act (NSW). The section states:

(1) Murder shall be taken to have been committed where the act of the accused, or thing by him or her omitted to be done, causing the death charged, was done or omitted with reckless indifference to human life, or with intent to kill or inflict grievous bodily harm upon some person, or done in an attempt to commit, or during or immediately after the commission, by the accused, or some accomplice with him or her, of a crime punishable by imprisonment for life or for 25 years;

Every other punishable homicide shall be taken to be manslaughter:

(2) No act or omission which was not malicious, or for which the accused had lawful cause or excuse, shall be within this section;

No punishment or forfeiture shall be incurred by any person who kills another by misfortune only.


Since Murder/Manslaughter is a criminal offence, the burden of proof lies on the Prosecution.

The prosecution must prove the Accused’s guilt beyond reasonable doubt.

That is a high standard of proof that the prosecution must achieve before someone can be convicted of Murder/Manslaughter.

To establish Murder/Manslaughter, the prosecution must prove each of the following matters beyond reasonable doubt:

  • That you did an act or failed to do an act;
  • That the act, or failure to act, resulted in the death of another person; and
  • That you either:
  • Intended to kill the person;
  • Intended to cause the person really serious bodily injury; or
  • Acted with reckless indifference to human life; that is, you foresaw that it was probable that death would result.


Murder/Manslaughter carries a maximum penalty of life Imprisonment or 25 years.

To read more about this offence, click on this link.

To read our previous blog on how a manipulative women was jailed after the murder of her fiance, click here.

National Criminal Lawyers have been successful in defending a number of Murder/Manslaughter charges where the prosecution could not establish each of the elements of the offence. If you or someone you know require advice, please contact us for a free consultation.

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