A Parsippany man charged in the October 2012 fatal stabbing of his wife at Lake Hiawatha's Kazumi Sushi restaurant pleaded guilty to the crime in Morris County Superior Court in Morristown Wednesday, Acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp announced.
Jiu Jian Zheng, 43, an undocumented Chinese immigrant who operated the restaurant with his 34-year-old spouse, Yun “Wendy” Fei Lin, admitted that he stabbed her because he believed she was interested in her business partner, Ren Lin, according to a statement from the prosecutor's office. Zheng also admitted to trying to assault Lin with a stick.
In exchange for his guilty pleas to charges of aggravated manslaughter and aggravated assault with a weapon, Morris County Assistant Prosecutor Julie Serfess recommended that a sentence of 20 years in state prison. Under the No Early Release Act, if the judge accepts the recommendation at the scheduled Nov. 22 sentencing, Zheng will have to serve a minimum of 17 years—85 percent of the sentence—before he can be considered for parole consideration, according to the prosecutor's office.
With regard to the aggravated assault charge, the prosecutor's official said Serfess will recommend a sentence of five years to run concurrent to the aggravated manslaughter sentence.
At the time of his arrest, Zheng was also charged with possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose and unlawful possession of a weapon. The prosecutor's office statement said they will be dismissed at sentencing.
After his sentence ends, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which has a detainer against Zheng, will take custody of the man, who left China illegally according to the prosecutor.