Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Scorching August

Just one month ago, I had described July 2013 as “a dangerous month in Malaysia”. In August, it got even worse. In fact, a lot worse. I would consider it “a scorching August”, the month where violent gun crime ran riot. 

August 02: A gold trader Wong Foo Yui, escaped death when a gunman fired three shots in his direction when the former stopped his Toyota Camry at a traffic light junction in Jalan Makmur in KL’s Pandan Indah.

August 03: In Kajang, Selangor, a gunman coolly walked into a house in Cheras Perdana and fired four shots at close range, killing Balamurali Balakrishnan. 

On that same day too, a Sarawakian businessman, Teong Choon Kwong died after being shot in a carpark in Beverly Hills, Penampang, Sabah. 

August 05: Amirul Tajo Nasir, was shot 10 times at point blank range at a warong in Kampong Gong Mengkeleh, Pasir Puteh in Kelantan just before subuh (start of fast) prayers.Nor Hadiyana Zakaria, the warong owner's daughter, was injured when she was hit by a stray bullet. 

August 06: Oh Hua Huang was shot by one of two men who broke into his house at Taman Pondok Labu in Kulim, Kedah. Police believed that the motive was burglary.

August 07: A 29-year-old was shot four times by one of two men on a motorcycle while driving in Taman Klebang Putra in Chemor, near Ipoh, Perak. Two more shots had missed him. The victim was not identified.

August 08: In Penang, at least six shots were fired at a bungalow of a businessman in Pulau Tikus, but no one was injured in the incident. According to a Bernama report, the owner had lodged a police report earlier after finding a warning note with six live bullets in front of his house.


Bernama pix 

Then just hours later, a motorist K Veerappan, 37, was executed gangland style after he stopped at a traffic light at Penang’s Anson Road. Police said the pillion rider fired at least 14 times at Veerappan, with 10 bullets hitting him in the cheek, neck and right abdomen. See above photo.

August 09: Forty-three-year-old Chong Peng Meng, whom police said was previously a member of the Gang 04 Jalan Penang, was shot at seven times in a 12.30 AM incident at Datuk Keramat near Komtar – also in Penang. The victim sustained only a gunshot wound in his left thigh.

In KL, four armed men entered a gold jewellery shop in Jalan Kelang Lama’s Plaza Sentral, smashed the glass counters, scooped up RM600,000 worth of jewellery and escaped. Two shots were fired during this sixty-second heist.

Also on the same day too, a motorist fired two warning shots at an express bus driver for overtaking a four-wheel-drive he was driving near Sagindai in Ranau, Sabah.

August 10: Soldier Mohd Azam Rudin Azizan, of the 2nd Royal Malay Regiment based in Sungai Ara, Penang was wounded after being shot in the back by unknown gunmen while he was on patrol duty (with another colleague on a motorcycle) along the Malaysia-Thailand security border at Bukit Kayu Hitam in Kedah.

August 13: A passer-by found the bloodied body of Mohamad Lutpi at about 7.30 AM at a car park in front of his restaurant in Kampung Cacar, Dungun in Terengganu. He was shot with two bullets found lodged on the chest and left shoulder. 

August 15: S Sambhath was shot while he was standing outside a bank with his friends in Jalan Besar, Kapar. The 26-year-old lorry driver died on the way to Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah in Klang.

August 17: A 30-year old mechanic was severely injured after he was slashed and shot in an attack by four assailants in Taman Johor in Tampoi, Johore. The New Sunday Times report (August 18, 2013, p 18) did not identify the victim.

August 23: The lifeless body of fishmonger Abd Majid Abd Rahman, 47, was discovered in a sand-dredging locality in Temerloh, Pahang. He had been shot twice in the head, once in the chest and once in both shoulders and both thighs.

August 24: Six men were wounded after two gunmen on a motorcycle fired “random” shots at an eatery in Taman Kasawari, Simpang Ampat, Penang. The victims, aged between 20 and 50, were taken to the Sungai Bakap Hospital. 

August 28: Four men assaulted Lee Siew Meng, fired two shots at him and badly injuring him in the right shoulder and left side of the body before fleeing with his car as he was about to check into a hotel in Jalan Air Putih, Kuantan in Pahang at 4.15 AM. He had just driven down from Kuala Terengganu on business.

August 30: Cattle breeder K Jaganathan was shot dead in front of his family as he was praying at the Sri Maha Mariamman Hindu temple in Taman Nusantara, Gelang Patah in Johore.

August 31: A Proton Persona was found riddled with bullets and a broken windscreen in Lebuh Mahasuri, Bayan Baru, Penang. Police believed the car driver had been involved in a shootout.

All of the above that I have painstakingly listed were sourced from Malaysian newspapers. And they didn’t include police shootings nor those who had shot themselves, intentionally or otherwise!

Indeed, it was a scorching August month where at least 20 shootings were reported. Compare this with just nine shootings in July. Is anybody safe in Malaysia?

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