A man who was stabbed repeatedly in last Friday's audacious armed robbery attempt in the heart of the Singapore business district was carrying nearly $800,000 in cash and cheques.
This was revealed yesterday when a 38-year-old Indonesian man was charged via video link from Singapore General Hospital.
Arun, who goes by a single name, is alleged to have robbed Mr Kang Tie Tie of his sling bag at about 1pm outside the Raffles Place MRT Station.
According to court documents, Arun purportedly used a knife with a 12.5cm-long blade to stab Mr Kang's right waist, right hip and right upper waist.
The bag contained $158,380 in Singapore currency, the equivalent of $20,030 in Brunei money, and three cash cheques for a total of $607,368, among other things.
News reports quoting a keysmith in the area said Mr Kang, who is believed to be Indonesian as well, had been a regular visitor to The Arcade, an office and retail building near the scene of the robbery, for a few years. The building's second floor is dominated by money changers.
Auditor Mohamed Nazir Abdul Rahiman had just finished lunch with colleagues at The Arcade at about 12.55pm last Friday and was heading to a mosque for prayers when he heard a commotion and saw a crowd of about 50 people. He then heard a woman shouting: "Don't let him get away, hold on to him."
Moving closer to the crowd, Mr Nazir, 28, saw two men at the centre of the commotion. Both seemed dazed, but Mr Kang was bleeding from his right side even as he tried to stand up, Mr Nazir told The Sunday Times yesterday.
"People were telling him not to move."
Mr Nazir also saw a woman, who he believes to be in her late 20s to early 30s, holding on to one man's shirt sleeve. Not knowing who was in the wrong, Mr Nazir, who is a police national serviceman, went up to detain the alleged assailant.
Another passer-by later helped hold on to the alleged robber's lower limbs, he said.
When he heard another woman saying someone should call the police, Mr Nazir used his cellphone to dial 999.
"That really showed how little struggle the person was putting up. I could hold him down with one hand," he said.
Police and paramedics arrived about five minutes later.
Later, back at his KPMG office, Mr Nazir's colleagues asked him about his bloodied clothes. In the afternoon, as news about the incident spread online, the firm's managing director offered to pay for a new set of clothes and told him to take the rest of the day off.
He was asked by the police to make a statement later that night. Asked about the kudos he has been getting online, he said: "If a lady was brave enough to hold on to the guy, then why should I be afraid?"
However, he said he was disappointed that there were many others who stood by to record the incident instead of helping.
If convicted of armed robbery, Arun faces between two and 10 years in jail, and at least 12 strokes of the cane.