The Assassins : Pt 1 Murder at the dinner table. A story from Inspector Tony.

The family was about to say grace over dinner when two men burst into the house and sprayed bullets all over the dinning area taking along the lives of the family except Jake the 7 year old boy. Blood was splattered all over the dinning area and limbs were scattered on the floor. It was a horrible and unforgettable sight for a 7 year old boy. Jake was trembling with fear,too afraid to cry out for help. The neighbours heard the shooting and by the time they ran to the house to see what was happening, the 2 assassins scooted off in a high powered motorcycle.

It was almost 10 years ago  and Jake still remembered vividly the incident in which his father,mother and an older sister were shot dead. He had, all this time as he was growing up, tried to fathom the reasons for the murder of his family. Jake had asked his uncle,auntie and close relatives why was his family murdered in such a brutal fashion. He was even more puzzled as to why the killers spared his life. But no one had the answer.

Now at 17, Jake's curiosity and compulsion got the better of him. He must set out to find the reason or reasons for his family murder. He was recommended to retired Inspector Tony to help him find the answer and better still his family killers.

Tony sat quietly listening to the young Jake's recollection of that night murder. He jotted down some notes in his little black note book. Once a while Tony would fire questions at Jake , listened intently  and jotted down the answers.

After the interview with Jake, Tony announced to the teenager that he would take up the case. Jake was very please indeed and thank Tony without even discussing about Tony's fees.

BT: Jake's family left a huge estate worth $5 million for Jake. His uncle was the custodian and told Tony not to worry about his fees. A verbal promise of at least $1 million would be paid to Tony if he could bring Jake's murderer or murderers to justice.

The Assassins : Pt 2 Finding the Killers

Tony contacted his associate Maniam,a Malaysian living in Ipoh and sought his assistance. Tony also alerted his Thai counterpart in Bangkok as the killers were tan looking and spoke a "funny"kind of language as told by Jake.
Tony sought the help of his ex colleagues in the police force especially the ones who handled the case. He went to the library archives and look for the case report which was in the press 10 years ago. He also contacted his underworld friends and asked them for help. One must remember Tony was a professional and had a wide network of friends and contacts.
In a matter of few days, Tony was able to established with almost 90% certainty that the 2 assassins who killed Jake's family were Thais.
Tony and Manian  flew to Bangkok Airport and met Klahan, a close associate. Klahan in Thai means courageous. Klahan was dark tan,well built,around 40 years old and stood at 1.8 meter tall. He was an ex gangster chief turned hired killer and private eye. Klahan spoke Malay,Mandarin,English besides his own language. He drove them in his almost new  Mercedes coupe 500 to an old walk-up apartment in  hot spot Patpong. There Klahan introduced Tony and Manian to Chai an illegal gun seller.
Tony and Manian chose the .44 S&W Special which was about the best in Chai's collection.  Equipped with the S&W Special, the three of them checked into a 5 star hotel in downtown Bangkok. There they instantly began discussing their plan to trace the person who was behind Jake's family murder.

One way to find out who was behind the murder was to look for the killers. The killers would most probably have direct dealing with the culprit...i.e. face to face. Under the circumstances, Tony and associates would go all out and look for the killers in Thailand. It's like looking for a needle in the haystack but it's possible to identify them if one was a professional and had a good network of contacts.

The Assassins: Part 3 (the end)....Jake confronted the killer!

Klahan conceded it was a almost impossible task to find Jake family's killers as it happened a long time ago. Most if not all the culprits would have been killed, disappeared or untraceable. But Tony and Maniam did not want to give up so easily. They persuaded and promised Klahan S$100K if he could help trace or find the killers. It was an extremely good deal for Klahan especially when one converts the 100k into Thai Bahts. Klahan was offered a deal which he cannot turned down. Using his wide contacts, Klahan went on searching for the killers.
At first he visited Chai the gun dealer. Chai was a pro and whenever anyone purchased any weapons from him, he would secretly video taped the whole deal with a hidden pin hole camera, unknown to the buyers. He would keep a record of the videos and would not destroyed them even after many years, just in case....
Chai was offered a big sum of cash if he could show the videos of all his customers for that particular year when Jake's family was assassinated.

Klahan,Tony and Maniam were driven to a place and ushered into a dark room somewhere near Chai's office and shown the videos of Chai's customers. Tony took down some notes and several times stopped the videos to snap pictures of some Chai's customers.

After the screening of the videos, Chai was handed an envelope of hard cash, amounting to a couple of thousands of US dollars by Tony.

Back in the hotel room,Tony and company sat down and had a couple of drinks. They ordered room service. After their meals, they decided to tour Bangkok night spots. Khalan was their tour leader. He brought them to the famous Patpong a red district.

One of the world's most famous red-light districts, Patpong is where it all started (Thailand's Go-Go culture). It has even been immortalised in a James Bond chase-sequence. Its two parallel side-streets, found between Silom and Surawongse Roads, house around 100 neon-lit strip bars offering naughty shows and the famous pole-dancing entertainment.

Patpong has long since been usurped as the 'king of the scene' by Soi Cowboy, its counterpart around Sukhumvit. However, its reputation means it's still a huge attraction, mainly for sightseers more interested in ogling at - rather than indulging in - the carnal delights on offer. But while for men Patpong is likely to mean 'adult', for women Patpong definitely means 'night market'. At night this teems with hawkers and humble stalls selling what is mostly tourist tat.

They patronised a few go-go bars and drank themselves silly that night.

The next morning, Tony, Maniam and Klahan started to work frantically on quest to find Jake's family killers. Jake had called and enquired how things were progressing. The young man was getting impatient with Tony. Jake demanded quick results to the point Tony almost wanted to give up the assignment. But  for a million bucks Tony tolerated Jake's impatience and decided to preserve.

Tony decided that the 50 or so customers of Chai's in the videos during 1993 when the murder took place should be narrowed down to a few. The murder was on 23 December 1993. With some quick calculation, Tony and Maniam decided to look for Chai's customers who bought their guns a day or two before 23 December 1993.

Klahan took a few pictures of the men in the videos and showed them to his ex colleagues in the police force. They did a study and zeroed down to two men who may have committed the murder in Singapore. They discovered one of the two men was already dead and another one was serving time in a Thai prison for extortion and robbery.

The job for Klahan was now to interrogate the man in the prison and find out whether he did commit the murder and on whose instruction. It was a difficult task for Klahan. How was Klahan to get into contact with the prisoner let alone interrogate him?

A few days later, Klahan managed to find someone who could help him meet the prisoner face to face. It was a complicated deal but succeeded mainly due to some financial incentive.
Someone stood in the place of the prisoner. He was smuggled out and sent to meet Klahan, Tony and Maniam.  After a few days of strong-arm persuasion, the killer spilled the beans.

It was unprofessional for a hired killer to divulged any information to anyone about his assignment. He would be condemned by the underworld assassins and often exterminated after leaking out information. This was a vow a hired killer would take before taking on any assassination. But here with strong arm tactics he had no choice but to confess.

For his assistance, the killer's term in prison would be shortened from 10 years to 5. It was a bargain which Klahan struck with the authorities whom he had assured of great financial rewards.

The killer brought Klahan and his associates to the house of the man who hired him and his partner for the job in Singapore.

The man's name was Preecha which in Thai means wisdom or intelligence.He was known by his friends and business associates as Cha.

Cha lived in a huge house with high fences and 3 fierce Rottweilers with killing instinct. These dogs were well trained to protect the property and it's owners. No one dared go near the sprawling property of Cha's. Besides, Cha had a few body guards to protect him. Yes Cha was a wealthy man with lots of government and underworld connection.

Maniam although a 3rd Dan TKD black belt exponent was terrified at the sight of the 3 dogs. As a child he had been attacked by a mongrel back in Malaysia. That bitter and painful experience stayed with him even till this day. On the other hand Tony was an expert in dog handling. He was in the dog unit of the police force when he was a young officer.
Tony knew very well that it was easy to kill the  3 Rottweilers. Through his wide experience, he knew lacing meat with Xylitol,an artificail sweetener used in human food can be lethal to the dogs.

That evening, they set out to capture Cha. First thing Tony did was to feed the 3 dogs with meat laced with Xylitol which would instantly kill them. Second thing was for them to cut the wired fences. Third was to disarm the body guards,gag and tie them up. All three things, the men did with perfection.

Lastly, the 3 men approached the huge house and look for Cha. They could not find him at first but the gushing sound of the water through the piped line told them that Cha could be in the bathroom. They rushed to the bathroom on the upper floor and indeed found a burly man  of about  60 years old in a Jacuzzi.

Cha reached out for his revolver which was placed near his Jacuzzi. Instinctively, Maniam
swiftly kicked it out of Cha's reach. A fight broke out between the naked Cha and Maniam.
Cha was no match for the TKD expert. He was knocked almost unconscious. They then tied Cha up and quickly bundled him to a waiting car.

Thirty minutes of speedy driving brought them to an old dilapidated house. Here, they interrogated Cha and found out that he was the man who ordered the killing of Cheng,Jake's late father and his whole family. Nothing more was divulged.

Tony called Jake in Singapore and told him of their success. " Do you want us to get rid of Cha?" Tony asked Jake. " Nope,I will do the job myself "...came the stern reply. " I will take the first flight to Bangkok now.....and you make sure he does not escape" Jake ordered Tony.

It was in the wee of the morning that a Thai Airway jet brought Jake to Bangkok International Airlport. There was Klahan in his Mercedes Sports to pick Jake up.
They arrived at the place where Cha was confined.

" At last, I have met my family's killer..." Jake swore at Cha. " Now it is my turn to spray bullets into your numbskull head " Jake shouted angrily at Cha. " Wait let me explain first" pleaded the older man. " Why should I listen to your explanation huh? killed my family without giving them a chance to have their last meal.." Jake tearfully told Cha.

" But I am your father, Jake or whatever your name is" cried Cha.

Cha then went on to explain why he ordered the killing of Cheng and his family and sparing Jake's life. The story went on like this according to Cha......

Many years ago, Cheng and Cha were business partners. Things went sour and Cheng felt Cha had cheated him. Cheng took vengeance by  kidnapping  Cha's young wife and raped her. She gave birth to a baby boy. According to Cha, Cheng got rid of the boy's mother and brought the boy up as his own son. That boy was Jake.

Jake, Tony and the rest of the men were shocked at the revelation. Cha claimed that his wife was made pregnant by him and when Cheng had raped her, the unborn child was his (Cha's). The story was unbelievable and Jake decided a DNA test would be appropriate to find out the truth.

The result of the DNA test came a week later. It was established Cha was truly Jake's father. " The DNA test can't lie, Jake.....I am your real father and not Cheng" Cha pleaded tearfully. Jake couldn't accept the reality that the killer Cha was his own flesh and blood. " I don't care a damn!" shouted the young hot blooded Jake.
He took Klahan's revolver and pointed it at Cha's head. " Say your last prayer my precious DAD!" Jake screamed at Cha. Jake's trembling finger was slowly about to squeeze the trigger........

Two days later, Jake, Tony and Maniam took a SQ flight bound for Singapore. A few days later, payment of a cool $1 million was paid to Tony.
Maniam got his share of 150k and Klahan 100k. After deducting expenses, Tony kept 600k to himself. It was a job well done by the trio.

Lim hired Tony..Part 1...Tony passed the test. (this story is dedicated to April)

Tony's mobile phone rang. It was listed as "unknown" and of course there was no phone number of the caller shown on Tony's phone. "Hello Tony here....who's that calling?" Tony answered.
"Sir, my name is Harry and I am calling on behalf of my boss Mr. Lim"...a voice on the other end was heard telling Tony. "Yes, Harry what can I do for ya?" Tony inquired.
"Tony, my boss wants to engage your service....can we meet at the BLU Bar Level 24, Tower Wing of Shangri-la hotel at 7pm tomorrow evening?"...." Will your boss Mr Lim be there?" asked Tony politely. " Yes Sir, just you, me and Mr Lim..." " Okay I will see you both tomorrow then" confirmed Tony.

Tony was at the BLU 10 minutes to 7 but there was no sign of Harry nor Lim. The place was a little quiet on this weekday evening except for a few Caucasians men and women drinking and chatting away, oblivious of Tony's presence.

Then, just a minute before 7, Tony's phone rang. It was listed as an "unknown" call. Tony answered the call and the already familiar voice of Harry's came on the line.
"Tony, we will be there in a minute or two, our apology for being a bit late.." Harry hurriedly told Tony.

At 7:10 pm, a burly, distinguished looking Chinese man of about 40 and a young tan and handsome tough man appeared at the entrance of BRU. The tan looking man looked as though he was  the Chinese man's bodyguard.

The tan looking man was Harry and he recognised Tony immediately. Harry had done his homework by studying and scrutinising anybody his boss wanted to hire.
The three shook hands and exchanged greetings.

Harry called for the bar waitress and ordered drinks for the three of them. Immediately after the drinks were served, Lim started to tell Tony about the reason for hiring him. Before Lim could explicitly explain the reason, Tony gestured to Lim not to continue. He wrote on the paper napkin of BLU, " This place is bugged don't say more". Lim and Harry nodded their heads, got up and moved away from the table. Harry gestured to Tony to leave the place.
They made their move and went outside the bar to talk. After some consideration, Lim invited Tony to his house which was a 3 minute drive from The Shangri-la to continue their business.

In his Jaguar, Lim told Harry he was truly impressed with Tony's sharpness and professionalism. "How on earth did he know that a bugging device was planted under the table at BLU?" Lim asked Harry. He, Harry did not reply to Lim's question. 

Before they met at BLU, Harry had recruited someone to plant the bugging device under
the table which they sat to test the Tony's acuteness and discernment. If Tony could tell that the place was bugged it goes to show that they had engaged a highly professional detective.
Tony passed the test with flying colour.

Lim hired Tony.. part 2.Was it a case of revenge?

They arrived at Lim's sprawling house that had the ambiance of a castle in just under 4 minutes. It was situated at Nassim Road, the rich people's district 10 of Singapore.
Tony was invited into the formal living room which had six picture windows that span the entire room, a canopy ceiling and a hardwood floor. " Wow  I have never seen anything like this !" Tony exclaimed.

Harry served Tony and Lim each a drink of their choice. Harry had a glass of whisky. It was here that Lim explained to Tony why he was hired.

Lim's youngest son Steve had been abducted  two days ago after leaving his school by three men. The maid and a bodyguard who escorted Steve were knocked unconscious. The strange thing about the case, according to Lim was that he had not received any ransom demand for the release of his son. Perhaps, it was still early days, perhaps not, Lim told Tony.

Although the case was reported to the police, they could not find any trace of Steve nor his abductors. Why was Steve abducted and why was there no demand for ransom? 
The case puzzled an experienced former police inspector like Tony too.

Tony could not find any lead to work on. Was this a case of revenge on Lim or some sort, Tony asked himself ? The only thing Tony told Lim was to wait for Steve's abductors' phone call. Somehow, there would be some form of contact between the abductors and Lim in the next few days.

Tony left Lim's residence around midnight but not without asking Lim to notify him if the abductors were to contact him.

Lim hired Tony..Part 3..Is the boy dead?

Lim was a decent business man. He was not the type who was involved in shady businesses nor had bitter rivals. Tony couldn't understand why one would want to snatch Lim's son.

On the morning of the fourth day of Steve's disappearance, Lim received a phone call from the police. A few hours before, they had fished out the dead body of a boy around Steve's age off the shore of East Coast Park. Besides the dead boy, they also fished out some toys and a shoe.

Lim hurriedly left for the mortuary. He was asked to identify whether the dead boy was his son, Steve. Tony was informed of the situation.

To Lim's pleasant surprise, the dead boy was not Steve. However, the shoe that was found belonged to Steve. Was it a coincidence?  Was Steve dead too?  Lim was worried and couldn't eat his lunch that day.

Tony analysed the situation, about the shoes and the dead boy. He was a clever and experienced detective always looking things from many angles. Besides, he also has an analytical mind.
Looking at the time the corpse,toys and shoe were found in the seas of East Coast, Tony knew that the tide must have brought them into Singapore from the Java Sea. It might be from the island of Sulawesi or Bintan.

Tony using his secret satellite imagery system like the one Google Map is using started to zoomed into the Island of Bintan and Sulawesi. It may take a whole day to scan the two Indonesian islands for the whereabouts of Steve.

Lim hired Tony..Part 4..a springboard for assassination?

Tony, with the help of TG and Angel scanned the whole of Bintan and Sulawesi but couldn't find any sign of the hideout or place whereby Steve was kept. These two islands with their huge vast land of forest and thick vegetation made it difficult for Tony to locate and pinpoint the whereabouts of Steve and his captors.

By late evening, Lim received a phone call listed as "unknown". There was so much anxiety on Lim's part. Who could it be..? Lim wondered. Could it be Steve's captors? With all these questions, Lim answered the call. Yessss! the call was from a man calling himself "H". He claimed he had Steve in his custody.
"Listen carefully now, don't make any silly mistake or else your little boy will die"..H, in his stern no nonsense voice told Lim. "Yes sir, I will do whatever you tell me and please I beg you not to harm the boy"...Lim pleaded with Steve's captor.
"Do not report or attempt to report to the police what my demand is or about this phone call....alright Lim?" demanded H. "Yes I will obey your instruction"...Lim was heard telling H.

The demand made by H was simple. Lim and everyone or occupiers of his huge house had to vacate the place and hand over the keys of the gates and house to someone whom H would appoint in the days to come. There was no demand of ransom payment nor anything else.
Lim's place would be occupied by H or his representatives for a week. The handover of the place must be done in a manner that would not arouse any suspicion.
If Lim carried out the instruction to the letter, he would have his house back as well as his son. Otherwise, Steve would be killed.

Immediately after the call from H, Lim, used his other mobile and phoned Tony. They met at the nearby Shangri-la Hotel. Lim handed his mobile, the one that H called earlier on to Tony.
Tony took the phone and together drove to his office.

Earlier, much earlier on, Tony had given a custom made special mobile phone to Lim. He had also transferred Lim's SIM card to this particular phone. Now Tony is going to decode the conversation and locate where H had made the call from.

It did not take long for Tony to find out that H had made the call from Batam, an Indonesian island 20 km away from Singapore.
Tony instructed Angela and TG to use his spying satellite scanner to zoom in on  Batam for H's whereabouts. Perhaps, Steve was held in the same place.

Tony was puzzled as to why Steve's captor wanted to occupy Lim's place instead of asking for a ransom. Would Lim's place be used as a springboard to assassinate a foreign dignitary living next door or would it be used for some other sinister or criminal purposes?