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FBI: Search for visiting Chinese scholar is agency priority

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URBANA, Ill. (AP) — The FBI says the search for a visiting Chinese scholar missing from the University of Illinois is a national priority for the agency.

Jon Holloway, assistant special agent in charge of criminal investigation at the Springfield FBI office, discussed the FBI’s efforts Thursday night at a campus meeting about 26-year-old Yingying Zhang’s disappearance.

Holloway says updates are being regularly sent to the office of the FBI’s acting director and U.S. field offices.

 Related: Chinese scholar missing from University of Illinois for days

Zhang was last seen on a surveillance video getting into a black Saturn Astra in Urbana on the afternoon of June 9. Police have labeled the case a kidnapping but haven’t ruled out other scenarios.

Earlier Thursday, her father Ronggao Zhang made an emotional appeal for his daughter’s safe return in an interview with The (Champaign) News-Gazette.