BANTING: He is known as Banting’s very own philanthropist and a perfect gentleman. To many others, he was simply a conman.
This was the reactions received on the Datuk, who along with his brother and six others, are being investigated for the quadruple murders which have shaken this sleepy town.
The Datuk’s immediate neighbour in Jalan Cempaka Wangi in Taman Cempaka, identified only as Kak Ana, 45, said he looked pious and acknowledged her every time he saw her outside the house.
“On several occasions, he asked me to prepare him a rendang dish, knowing that I operate a food stall.”
Kak Ana is renting one of the Datuk’s semi-detached houses in the neighbourhood.
“He stays alone here with his brother. His wife and two children stay in Puchong as the kids are in an international school.
“They come back only during the weekends.”
She was in a state of disbelief over the news surrounding the Datuk.
She said she was away in Muar, Johor, for Hari Raya and was shocked when she returned yesterday and saw his photograph in the newspapers.
“I am still shocked,” said Kak Ana.
Kuala Langat member of parliament Abdullah Sani Abdul Hamid, who has approached the Datuk for advice over a land matter for the construction of temple, said the suspect portrayed himself as a “man for the community”.
“I am truly disappointed. He should be contributing to the community, not get involved in such activities.
“It is shocking that such a thing had taken place in a serene town like Banting.”
The Datuk’s law firm was also sealed yesterday afternoon by police as investigations into his activities intensified.
A random interview with several people in Banting revealed they were all shocked at the gruesome murders and could not believe that they involved a well-known lawyer who was known for his charitable deeds.
Another resident, who declined to be named, said he had approached the Datuk when a family approached him for help over a cheating case involving a loan shark.
“When I contacted the Datuk, he told me to meet him at his firm, but I did not as I wanted the family concerned to lodge a police report.”
He claimed that the family was threatened by the loan shark at the lawyer’s office.
He also said the Datuk was known to take up cases, mainly involving land issues, which were rejected by other lawyers.
V. Paramasivam, a representative of the Indian community, said that he could not digest the fact that a man of such stature was involved in such a heinous crime.
“If the allegations are true, then he has brought shame to his profession and to the Indian community.”
Amir Hasan Haris, a representative for the Malay community of Kuala Langat, said the peaceful atmosphere in the town had been shattered.
“Banting is now in the limelight for all the wrong reasons,” he said, adding that he was thankful police had been quick in solving the crime.