Initial news reports suggested that the Indian gangland figure was a Canadian national. This came about after police in Phuket, early on Saturday morning, discovered 2 pieces of identification including a Canadian passport and driver’s licence in the names of third parties, both of Indian descent.
The tourist gunned down on Friday night was a marked gangland crime figure who lived his life travelling between Dubai and East Asia since he fled India in 2018 after police uncovered a huge ketamine drug factory. 32-year-old Jimi Sandhu, however, was best known as a gangland crime figure in British Columbia who was deported back to India in 2016 after Canadian police warned the public to stay clear of him as they feared he was an imminent target for assassination.
A man murdered in Phuket on Friday night by what investigating Thai police believe to be two foreign assassins was a dangerous gangster who lived between Dubai and Southeast Asia after taking flight from India in 2018 when he was discovered operating a ketamine drug factory.
Police have named the international criminal as 32-year-old Jimi Sandhu whose underworld nickname was ‘slice’ due to a large scar on his cheek.
He is believed to have been singled out due to his links to a bitter gangland feud in Canada’s crime underworld.
Victim was an Indian national on the run from Indian authorities having been deported from Canada in 2016
On Friday night, initial reports of the ‘hit’ on Mr Sandhu suggested he was a Canadian citizen of Indian descent.
This information was later corrected after police investigated the luxury villa in the hotel complex in Phuket where the hoodlum had lived since flying into Thailand on January 27th last.
Mr Sandhu owned the villa which is part of the large 180 room Beachfront Hotel complex which also rents out villas which are offered for sale.
Police are understood to have discovered the body of the gangster at approximately 4 am on Saturday morning after he was gunned down by two armed attackers at 10 pm on Friday night.
Two lurking figures seen on CCTV approaching a red MG hatchback car that had just pulled up at the villa
Mr Sandhu had just pulled up in a red MG hatchback car when the killers approached him.
Video footage from the scene of the killing shows the two figures both covered with woollen balaclavas initially lurking near another parked car which they used as cover before then approaching the victim as he emerged from his car, lunging at him while also opening fire.
The attackers fired continuously at the man as he fell on the ground with one attacker bending down to shoot Mr Sandhu at closer range into the head area making sure the attack was fatal.
The victim was wearing a white T-shirt and cream shorts.
On Saturday morning, police officers who arrived at the scene found two forms of identification in the MG car parked by the Indian man seconds before his death.
One is understood to have been a Canadian passport in the name of Mandeep Singh and a driver’s licence in the name of Amarjit Singh Sindhu.
Police also found a small amount of dried marijuana in the car.
Killers escaped through undergrowth near beach
It is believed that the Indian national was hit at least 10 times although police later confirmed that they retrieved 28 .38 calibre bullet cartridges from the scene of the murder.
A second surveillance video released by police shows the attackers running towards undergrowth as they made their escape from the resort complex sited near Rawai Beach.
Key figure in drug wars in British Columbia 10 years ago when he lived in the Canadian city of Abbotsford
The Indian victim had been deeply involved in criminal activity in the Canadian cities of Abbotsford and Vancouver where he was a key player in the United Nations drugs syndicate which engaged in a bloody turf war at that time with a rival gang called the Red Scorpions.
Mr Sandhu had emigrated with his family when he was 7 years of age to Abbotsford where his relatives from India were already living.
He was deported from Canada at the beginning of 2016 because of his extensive criminal activity which police also linked with assassination hits on rival gang members.
Canadian police highlighted drug dealer as a danger to the public in 2015 – targeted for assassination
Indeed in 2015, in the run-up to his deportation, the Royal Canadian Police took the unprecedented step of warning local people in Abbotsford and Vancouver to avoid contact with Mr Sandhu as he was targeted for a reprisal killing and officers strongly feared that innocent bystanders would be caught in the crossfire.
At a fateful Canadian Immigration department review before his eventual deportation, Mr Sandhu begged officials not to deport him back to his native country.
‘I would just like one chance, one opportunity to prove myself to you,’ he told a hearing according to a report in the Vancouver Sun newspaper which assiduously covered Mr Sandhu’s criminal career and the associated gangland war. ‘I won’t let you down.’
Admitting his role in gang-related violence, he also presciently predicted his fate: ‘I know that path is either go to jail or you die.’
Phuket police look for foreigners hired for the hit
Police in Phuket believe that the height of the perpetrators and the nature of the hit indicate that they may be looking for hired foreign assassins.
They are also looking into social media reports suggesting a fellow gang member of Mr Sandhu’s was involved in an incident last week in Dubai where a piece of jewellery was snatched from his body with those involved later revealing the incident online.
There are also reports of members of the Red Scorpion crime gang in British Columbia celebrating the assassination of Mr Sandhu.
Feud between rival Red Scorpions drug cartel and the United Nations in British Columbia over drug profits
Founded in the mid-2000s, the Red Scorpions is a crime gang specialising in the supply of illegal drugs and narcotics in the suburbs of Vancouver in British Columbia.
Allied with the international Hells Angels crime syndicate, they are mortal enemies of the United Nations crime gang.
Both crime organisations compete for the same turf in the same lucrative trade.
The United Nations is composed of Canadians with many East Asians and Iranians forming part of its membership.
Both gangs are from multicultural and linguistic backgrounds with each having its own distinctive style and trademarks.
Both have a known capacity for murder leaving a trail of destruction over the past fifteen years or so.