A dispute over a drug deal between two triads was behind the murder of a motorist at a Shell petrol station in Taman Pelangi on Sunday (Dec 18), according to Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
The victim, 44-year-old Tan Ah Choy, is believed to have been the leader of an underworld organisation, the Star quoted the minister as saying.
“Police have zeroed in on the reason and have identified the four assailants. A manhunt has been launched to nab the suspects,” said Dr Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister.
The minister made the comments after attending the Home Ministry monthly assembly on Tuesday. He added that police were on the alert for retaliation by the victim’s associates.
The victim, known as Ah Chiu, is also known to have 13 previous drug records, the Malay Mail reported on Tuesday.
“The dispute between them started when the victim was unable to pay for the supplies he had taken from the syndicate members over several months,” a police source was quoted as saying by the Malay Mail.
The source added that the suspects were enraged when Tan started avoiding them and also tarnished their name among other gangs.
“The fact that the victim was murdered in public by being stabbed and run over by a car twice, clearly shows the suspects had a grudge,” the source said.
“The suspects made no effort to hide their identities … they probably wanted to send a strong message.”
Tan died after he was stabbed in the chest and mowed down by a car with four men inside. The victim, who was previously reported by Bernama to be in his thirties, had been using the air pump at the petrol station to inflate the tyres of his Volkswagen Polo.
In an update on Monday, the Johor police added that the white BMW 520i involved in the murder was using a number plate that did not belong to the vehicle.
The owner of the car had lodged a police report saying that he was not in Johor at the time of the murder, and that his car was repossessed a few months ago after he failed to pay the instalments, the Malay Mail report said.