Singapore kidnapping: 2 suspects are male lovers — The two suspects arrested for the Wednesday kidnapping of a supermarket tycoon’s mother have been lovers for over 10 years, according to reports.
The 79-year-old mother of Sheng Siong supermarket chain founder Lim Hock-chee was abducted on Wednesday while walking home from the market. She was approached by a man who lured her into a car after telling her that her son had been injured in a fall.
The kidnappers demanded a ransom of S$20 million (US16 million), but Mr. Lim was able to negotiate it down to S$2 million. He initially thought the call asking for a ransom was a prank, said reports.
His mother was released after Mr. Lim left the ransom under a tree in a park. Shortly afterwards, the two kidnappers were arrested and the ransom recovered.
The suspects, 41-year-old Lee Sze Yong and 50-year-old Heng Chen Boon, appeared in court on Friday.
A woman who identified herself as the mother of the younger suspect said the two men are lovers who have been living together for more than 10 years, according to The Straits Times.
The woman, who reportedly wanted to be known only as Madam Seow, said the two suspects share a Hougang flat with her.
On Friday she told reporters outside her flat that Mr. Lee was her only son, and said “My son is in trouble, of course I’m very sad,” in Mandarin, said The Straits Times report.
In a statement issued on Thursday, Deputy Police Commissioner Hoong Wee-teck said “In this particular case, and the few that were solved several years ago, we are grateful that families of victims remained calm and composed, alerted police without delay, and cooperated fully with us so that investigations could be conducted and swift action taken from the onset”.
The Sheng Siong supermarket chain has some 33 branches and earned S$637.3 million in revenue in 2012, according to their website.
Mr. Lim is Singapore’s 35th richest man, with a net worth of S$515 million, according to Forbes magazine.