After confronting his wife about romantic text messages she had received and hearing her confess to an affair with a colleague, a 55-year-old businessman told her lover to end the relationship or risk a beating.
Two months later, Chia Kee Chen was agitated when his wife received a Chinese New Year greeting on WhatsApp from her former lover, Mr Dexmon Chua Yizhi, 37.
Though Mr Chua immediately apologised for the mistake, Chia allegedly began stalking him, making Mr Chua feel so spooked that he made a police report.
In December 2013, more than a year after the affair had ended, Chia allegedly roped in two people - long-time friend Chua Leong Aik and Indonesian business partner Febri Irwansyah Djatmiko - to exact revenge on the ex-lover.
Chia has been charged with murdering Mr Chua and his trial is scheduled to start in October.
But details of the crime emerged in the High Court yesterday when his accomplice, Chua, was sentenced to five years' jail after pleading guilty to abduction and causing grievous hurt by dangerous means.
Chua, 66, a town council cleaning supervisor, admitted that on Dec 28, 2013, the trio carried out their plan to abduct and beat up Mr Chua to "teach him a lesson".
The plan was allegedly hatched by Chia, who sought revenge against the victim for his affair with his wife, Madam Serene Goh, 49.
The court heard that Madam Goh, then a sales executive, got to know Mr Chua, a material analyst who worked in the same packaging company. As they lived in the same area, Mr Chua started taking her home in July 2011. The next month, they started an affair, which had ended by July 2012.
But it came to light in November 2012, when Chia found text messages from Mr Chua to his wife.
She confessed and told her husband that there were photographs and videos of them having sex.
Later that day, Chia phoned Mr Chua, hurling vulgarities at him and threatening to beat him up. After this, Madam Goh told her husband where her ex-lover lived and pointed him out to Chia when he fetched her home from work.
The court heard that Mr Chua lodged two police reports over abusive phone calls and being stalked.
On Dec 24, Chia allegedly asked Febri to help him kill Mr Chua, promising to help the Indonesian set up his own business.
Febri arrived here on Dec 26. The next day, the trio met at an electrical sub-station near where Mr Chua lived to discuss the plan.
On the night of Dec 28, Chia allegedly drove a borrowed van to the sub-station. He had two knives, an electrode, a torchlight and gloves. He allegedly told Chua that he needed his help as the person who "bullied" his wife was "big-sized".
The trio then lay in wait at a multi-storey carpark near the victim's Choa Chu Kang flat. They cornered him at about 1am after he had parked his car, assaulted him and forced him into the back of the van.
Febri allegedly used the electrode to electrocute the victim, who fainted. Chia and Febri then allegedly tied the victim's hands and feet and continued beating him while Chua drove the van to Lim Chu Kang.
After some time, Chua told Chia that he "could not take it any more". He left the van near Lim Chu Kang and took a bus home.
Chia allegedly took over the wheel and drove to a military live-firing area, where they dumped the body.
Later that day, he and Febri left for Malaysia. The latter is still at large. Chia was arrested when he and his family returned two days later.
On Jan 1, 2014, he led the police to Mr Chua's body. An autopsy found multiple fractures on the victim's face, skull and ribs.
Yesterday, Chua's lawyer, Mr James Ow Yong, asked for four years' jail, saying that his client had played a minimal role. Deputy Public Prosecutor Tan Wen Hsien asked for five years, saying Chua knew the plan would involve violence and serious harm to the victim, but went along with it.