Son targeted 5 years after Biscuit King was kidnapped

Mr Lee Gee Chong was abducted and killed in 1960.
Mr Lee Gee Chong was abducted and killed in 1960.ST FILE PHOTO

The brutal 1960 kidnap and murder of "Biscuit King" Lee Gee Chong was in the news again this week in 1965 after his son and heir became the victim of a kidnapping attempt.

Chillingly, Mr Lee Boon Leong was ambushed while driving, just like his father. He was shot in the shoulder by his attackers, who fled when they saw he had a gun. Unlike his father, the 30-something survived despite being critically injured.

Mr Lee Gee Chong was chairman of Thye Hong Biscuit Factory and 49 years old when he was kidnapped and murdered in 1960.

He was being driven home by his regular driver, Mr Salim Noor, when another car forced their car onto an embankment. Mr Salim was injured in the incident, and three men pulled Mr Lee out of his car and into their own.

His body was found wrapped in a blanket and left in a graveyard off Yio Chu Kang Road, less than a week after he was abducted from his vehicle near his Garlick Avenue home. He had suffered severe head injuries.

The Biscuit King was the son of leading banker Lee Choon Seng, a former president of the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and chairman of the Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation.

The family told reporters that a note had reached the Thye Hong factory in Johor after the kidnapping, saying a man would be sent to negotiate, but no ransom was mentioned. It was not known if negotiations had begun before the victim was murdered.

Upon hearing the news that his son was dead, the elder Mr Lee said: "I never knew men could be so cruel."

Jennani Durai

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on July 19, 2015, with the headline 'Son targeted 5 years after Biscuit King was kidnapped'. Print Edition | Subscribe