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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Police Rule Out North

VLADIVOSTOK, Far East () -- Russian police have all but ruled out the possible involvement of North Korean secret agents in the killing of the South Korean consul, who was beaten to death.

Police said Thursday that North Koreans had been suspected because three men who looked Korean were seen running from the consul's apartment building the night Choi Duk-kun, 54, was killed.

But Viktor Kondratev, regional head of the Federal Security Service said the consul appeared to have been struck several times on the head, perhaps with a piece of pipe.

"I suppose secret services are more professional than that,'' Kondratev said Thursday. He said the killers were probably robbers.