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JAILED SUSPECT SAYS TWIN SISTER LIED ABOUT MURDER PLOT.

Byline: Associated Press

The woman charged with plotting to kill her identical twin and steal her identity claims her sister made up the story.

``What my sister is saying is not true,'' Jeen ``Gina'' Young Han, 22, told the Orange County Register on Saturday in an interview at the county Women's Jail. ``I'm fighting those charges.''

Sunny Han was angry, Jeen Han said, because she had revealed the twin's secrets to Sunny's boyfriend, who later left her.

Relatives said Jeen and Sunny Han were bitter enemies - a far cry from the days when they shared the honor of high school valedictorian.

``She's having a kick out of my being in jail,'' Jeen Han said. ``I called my sister after I was arrested. She said, `I wish you were dead.' She said I should go to prison for 20 years.''

The twins' father said he will try to persuade Sunny Han to drop the charges.

``I feel like I want to die,'' Yun Heo told the Register in a telephone interview from Inchon, South Korea.

Police said Jeen Han escaped from jail, picked up two teen-agers to subdue her sister and was about to shoot her when officers arrived on Nov. 6.

Han was arrested later that day at a San Diego airport and is charged with conspiracy to commit murder, robbery, burglary, false imprisonment and assault with a firearm.

Han also is charged with escape after failing to return to jail following a weekend furlough, she said.

Two boys, ages 15 and 16, also face charges.

Han said she went to her sister's Irvine apartment to retrieve her driver's license and some clothing. She took along the teen-agers to prevent any violent confrontation with her sister and was unaware that they had a gun.

However, authorities contend she supplied them with the weapon, and police say they have evidence that Han and the boys all handled it.

Han did not explain why the teen-agers had tied up her sister and a roommate and placed them in the bathtub while she waited outside. Before she was bound, Sunny Han managed to call 911 on a cellular telephone.

After fleeing the house as officers arrived, Jeen Han stopped at a car dealership and tried to buy a Nissan 300ZX sports car by using her sister's identification, investigators contend.

Sunny Han could not be reached for comment.

The sisters' enmity goes back at least to earlier this year, when police were called to break up fights at the Placentia home they briefly shared.

``One claimed the other was always beating her up,'' said police Lt. Chuck Babcock.

On one occasion when Jeen Han reported her sister had beaten her, police arrested Sunny Han on an outstanding 1994 felony warrant for credit card fraud, Babcock said.

The sisters emigrated from South Korea when they were 12. Sunny Han was outgoing, while Jeen was an introvert, relatives said.

Jeen was born five minutes after her sister - an important distinction in Korean culture - and was required to be deferential to her, relatives said.

Yet the two seemed to get along while growing up, said Jim Norris, an uncle who housed them. They even shared valedictorian honors at Mountain Empire High School in Pine Valley, near San Diego.

``These are top-of-the-line girls,'' he said. ``We never had a problem until they moved away.''

But in recent years, the two had changed.

``I can't trust what either one of them tells me,'' Norris said. He claimed that Jeen Han stole thousands of dollars from him to repay gambling debts.

Jeen had been serving time for theft and fraud and was awaiting trial on additional theft charges when she fled jail, according to officials.

She stole $40,000 from various victims during a two-month period this year, said sheriff's Deputy Henry Ramos.

Han said she stole from friends and relatives to pay off debts from a gambling addiction she developed while working as a blackjack dealer at a Lakeside casino.
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Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Nov 18, 1996
Words:661
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