GEORGE TOWN • A businessman who was allegedly shot dead by his bodyguard in Penang was the head of a criminal group called Gang 24, Malaysian police said.
According to The Star online news site, police said the secret society was involved in protection rackets and illegal money-lending, and had been on the police watch list for some time.
"It is one of 14 secret societies we monitor. We have a list of the members and know their movements," said OCPD Assistant Commissioner Mior Faridalathrash Wahid.
Sources told The Star the group could be expanding its activities to include drug trafficking.
The businessman, Datuk Ong Teik Kwong, 32, was also known as Datuk M, short for Datuk Muda (young Datuk). The Star reported that when he was conferred the honour, his friends, as well as numerous firms, took out 50 full-page congratulatory advertisements, worth more than RM150,000 (S$48,000), with a Chinese newspaper.
Malaysian media have reported that Mr Ong was linked to a murder case in 2011, in which a VCD seller was killed by several men armed with parangs.
Last Thursday, Mr Ong was travelling on the Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway, when his 37-year-old bodyguard opened fire in the car. The bodyguard was then said to have begun shooting at passers-by.
A passing motorist and motorcyclist were killed, while four others were injured by stray bullets in the ensuing rampage. The bodyguard and a third person in Mr Ong's car, who was also injured in the incident, have been remanded by police for questioning.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said the bodyguard had no criminal record and had been an army reservist. It was also reported that last Thursday was his first day of employment with Mr Ong.