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Two missionaries die from CO poisoning

TAIPEI--New Taipei police said Sunday that carbon monoxide poisoning was the cause of the death of two Mormon missionaries who were found a day earlier in an apartment they shared in New Taipei's Sanchong District.

The two dead were both male, a 25-year-old Taiwanese national and an American, 19, from Utah, according to the police.

Police said they were asked to conduct a house visit after other Mormon missionaries reported them missing, whereupon they discovered the corpses.

Prosecutors found a faulty indoor gas water heater, which they determined as the cause of the carbon monoxide leakage.

There were no suspicious circumstances and the case has been closed, the police said.

The New Taipei Fire Department reminded the public that carbon monoxide poisoning does not just happen in winter when people tend to keep their windows closed against the cold. In summer, it can also be a hazard, as people tend to keep doors and windows closed to maintain the cool produced by air conditioners, the department said.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it will help handle the aftermath of the American Mormon's death, if it is asked to do so.

The Associated Press reported earlier in the day that the Mormon church has said the two missionaries were Connor Benjamin Thredgold, 19, of Utah and Xiong Yu-peng, 24 of Kaohsiung.

The report also cited the Salt Lake Tribune as saying that Xiong had been serving as a missionary since March 2013.

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