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On their recent trip to Johor Bahru, a group of Singaporeans arranged to meet some Malaysian friends there.
What they didn’t expect was to come across an armed robbery at knifepoint.
Despite the apparent danger, however, one of them bravely ran into the restaurant to help an injured man.
Theft in broad daylight at the JB restaurant
According to Facebook user Yijie, the daytime robbery occurred between about 1:20 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. on June 8, 2022 at Monet, a restaurant in Mount Austin.
Mount Austin is about a 25 minute drive from the Woodlands checkpoint.
Six men holding machetes reportedly rushed into a private room in the restaurant, Yijie said, calling on those with leads or relevant dashcam recordings to get in touch with him.
The Facebook user, who appears to work at the restaurant, said a reward would be given.
A press release issued by Polis Daerah Johor Bahru Selatan on June 9 says they are tracking down four male suspects to help with an investigation into an armed robbery with machetes, with injuries.
Their report claimed the suspects were tall and thin and wore black masks that only showed their eyes and mouths, adding that the vehicle they were using was a silver Toyota Estima car.
He also revealed that the three victims were between 26 and 29 years old and that the four items seized included three Rolex watches.
Two lacerated men
Talk to Shin Min Daily News (SMDN)the boss of an online watch store, V-Time Watch, surnamed Cai, 27, revealed that the victims were his employees.
They were meeting with a buyer to complete a transaction involving two Rolex watches.
After concluding negotiations with the client, the latter chose to carry out the transaction at the Monet restaurant.
Cai said the security of the place seemed “not bad” and since it was broad daylight, they didn’t think it was a bad idea.
He sent two employees and a male bodyguard to the scene to complete the transaction.
Unexpectedly, shortly after the trio entered the room, four masked men wielding knives burst through the back door and began attacking one of the employees and the bodyguard.
The commotion in the room startled other diners and restaurant staff, causing everyone to scatter in an attempt to escape.
The thief allegedly made a reservation for a birthday surprise
Cai said the thief, who allegedly posed as a customer and a datuk, paid a deposit of RM5,000 (about S$1,576) for the watches.
This “datuk” would then have made the restaurant reservation and said it was for a friend’s surprise birthday.
The reservation included a private room and a menu worth RM5,000 (about S$1,576).
Cai revealed the text conversation between the restaurant and the “datuk” where they repeatedly asserted that money is not an issue as long as the environment is comfortable as they will discuss business.
Cai said when his employees told him the room was empty upon arriving at the scene, he began to become suspicious.
Unfortunately, by the time Cai was able to get to the restaurant, the incident had happened.
He shared that previously they had two or three customers who chose strange meeting points.
In response, Cai and his team changed their meeting place and did not get out of the car during the transaction.
They usually do such transactions in the watch store, but sometimes have customers requesting to do so in a restaurant.
They suffered a total loss of RM500,000 (approximately S$157,643) that day, including the two Rolex watches brought in for the transaction and the Rolex watch worn by the male employee.
They also lost a gold ring.
A Singaporean rushed to help the injured
Among the diners at the restaurant was a 56-year-old Singaporean named Yang You Ren (transliteration from Chinese).
He revealed that he traveled to Johor Bahru with four friends on Tuesday that week.
On the day of the incident, the five of them had planned to meet four Malaysian friends and another Singaporean friend for a meal.
Yang was returning to the restaurant after smoking outside when he saw everyone running out of the restaurant, he said.
After hearing about what had happened from one of the waiters, he walked into the room and saw an injured man who said his money had been taken.
Yang noticed that her arm had been cut so deeply that the bone could be seen.
He then helped the man out of the restaurant.
Yang then asked the restaurant staff for napkins to cover the man’s wound as he sat down to wait.
Upon learning from the man that his companion had also been injured, Yang went back into the room to take a look and noticed that the other man’s black jacket was soaked in blood.
Since Yang and his friends had other appointments to keep, he passed on his contact number to the restaurant and left, hoping the two men’s injuries weren’t too serious, he said.
According SMDNYang initially assumed a fire had started after seeing customers rushing in and hearing a waiter talking about a fire.
So he had rushed into the restaurant with a fire extinguisher, thinking he could help put out a small fire.
He eventually realized it was a robbery, but felt the fire extinguisher might still be useful in tackling thieves and didn’t back down.
He revealed that his friends who were there were worried about him and scolded him for being so reckless.
They only discovered that night that there were six thieves, which inevitably scared them.
Yang said he would have come in to help anyway, adding that those who were unaware could stay outside to help and that since he was aware, he could not feign ignorance.
Employee’s injury required nearly 100 stitches
Cai said his employee received nearly 100 stitches after suffering nerve damage from the attack.
Although his condition is currently stable, he is unable to move his fingers and will need to undergo physiotherapy for his recovery.
According to Cai, business continues as usual for the company.
Due to the nature of online commerce which requires them to interact with unknown customers, they will increase security awareness to ensure the safety of their employees, he added.
Cai also posted on Facebook asking for witnesses or dash cam footage from the thieves, and will reward those leads accordingly.
Three minute flight
cai said SMDN that the flight lasted less than three minutes.
He shared that after the thieves broke into the room, an employee was slashed twice in the right arm and the bodyguard was stabbed in the back.
The thieves then threatened to cut off the victims’ heads if they moved and ordered them to lie on the ground.
Then, the robbers not only took his employee’s bag, but also made him remove the Rolex watch he was wearing before fleeing.
When Cai arrived at the scene, he saw Yang helping his employee but did not have time to verify his identity before transporting the injured man to the hospital.
Best images via 宜杰 and 匯辰V-Time Watch on Facebook.