From the moment the two hitmen stepped back onto Canadian soil last February after the murder of crime figure Jimmy Sandhu, their fortunes began to unravel. 36-year-old Matthew Dupre sits in custody in Alberta as he fights extradition to Thailand while his alleged partner in the assassination of Mr Sandhu, Gene Karl Lahrkamp has been declared dead in a plane crash last Saturday while on the run as a fugitive. The hitmen found themselves pursued not only by police in Canada and Thailand but also by both rival gangs with links to Sandhu who they mercilessly gunned down at his villa in Phuket on February 4th last. This followed a robust, lightning speed and highly successful police investigation which identified the pair to the world.

One of the two murder suspects identified by Thai police over the murder of drug lord Jimmy Sandhu in Phuket on February 4th last died on Saturday in a plane crash near Sioux Lookout in Canada’s Ontario province. The news came just four days after 36-year-old Gene Karl Lahrkamp had been named the second most wanted man in Canada in an appeal to the public to track him down based on a warrant for his arrest issued in Phuket on February 11th last for murder.

Police in Canada have confirmed that Gene Karl Lahrkamp (centre), wanted for murder in Thailand on foot of an arrest warrant issued by Phuket Provincial Court on February 11th last, died on Saturday, April 30th in a plane crash near Sioux Lookout, a town in Northwestern Ontario. The private Cherokee plane was carrying four people who all died in the crash. It came only four days after Mr Lahrkamp had been listed as Canada’s second most wanted fugitive in the country’s Be on the Lookout (BOLO) programme by officials in Toronto.

The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) of British Columbia in Canada has announced that one of the two suspects wanted in Thailand by the court in Phuket for the murder of drug kingpin Jimmy Sandhu has died while on the run in a plane crash.

The crash is understood to have happened in Sioux Lookout in Ontario on Saturday, April 30th, just four days after 36-year-old Gene Karl Lahrkamp was listed as fugitive number two on the country’s most-wanted list under what is known in Canada as the Be on the Lookout (BOLO) programme coordinated by officials in Toronto.

Flew out of Thailand within days of the hit

Mr Lahrkamp is understood to have flown out of Thailand through Suvarnabhumi Airport just days after the brutal slaying of Mr Sandhu by two men on the night of Friday, February 4th at the drug lord’s luxury villa near Rawai Beach in the resort town.

Phuket tourist murder on Friday night was an international gangland hit on a known drug player

Following an intense and highly praised police investigation which saw the arrest of co-conspirators and even the retrieval of the firearms used in the hit from the sea, warrants were issued for two Canadians including Mr Lahrkamp by Phuket Provincial Court on Friday, February 11th, just one week later.

Death penalty may be a problem as two hitmen in the Sandhu case are named by police seeking arrests of the pair

The men were charged with premeditated murder as well as other offences.

Hit on Jimmy Sandhu believed to have been financed by drug gang in Canada with whom he had a feud

The second Canadian involved in the hit, believed to have been financed by a drugs gang in British Columbia with whom Mr Sandhu had developed a feud over the murder of one of their gang leaders at his hands, Matthew Dupre was arrested by Canadian police in Alerta, Canada on February 20th last.

He is currently being held in the custody of the court pending extradition proceedings launched by Thai authorities.

It is understood that Mr Lahrkamp had gone to ground and was ‘actively evading arrest’ through the use of his military training and underworld contacts according to the Canadian Royal Mounted Police.

Police, at one point, searched a mountainous area where the alleged hitman had run a dog breeding and training centre. 

He was last sighted in a small city called Trail in the West Kootenay region of British Columbia.

Lahrkamp was last seen in Trail, British Columbia, police thought he had been travelling with dogs

Police officers, who briefed the media only last week on the 36-year-old, at that time stated that he may have been travelling in the company of several dogs.

Police in Canada have declined to speculate on what caused the plane crash last Saturday.

The crash involved a light Cherokee passenger plane which according to Canada’s CBS News was on its way from Dryden, the second-largest city in the northwest of the Canadian province of Ontario to the smaller town of Marathon in the quieter Thunder Bay district of the province. 

They would only confirm that four people died in the crash including Gene Karl Lahrkamp and three others, two of whom were named while a fourth’s identity was withheld as the family had not yet been informed.

The two other individuals were 26 year old Abhinav Handa from Richmond in British Columbia and Duncan Bailey from Kamloops City in the same province. 

Canadian police investigating the killing of Sandhu in Canada to see if there was conspiracy to murder

Police in Canada, through the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) in British Columbia, had begun investigating the murder of Jimmy Sandhu there to establish whether any crime had been committed in the country or a conspiracy formulated on Canadian soil to murder 32-year-old Jimmy Sandhu who was deported from Canada in 2016 to India for his links to the UN drugs gang and ‘serious criminality’ in the country he and his family had emigrated to when he was only 7 years old.

Investigators are understood to have already interviewed Mr Dupre in connection with the plot.

Inspector Joel Hussey of the unit, in the aftermath of Dupre’s arrest, said that the force was looking ‘to determine what offences, if any, took place in Canada’ but could not elaborate on what Mr Dupre had said or not.

Hitmen shocked and terrified at news from Thailand

It has been reported that both Mr Lahrkamp and Mr Dupre from the moment of their arrival back in Canada in February, feared retribution from the criminal gang who are believed to have hired them to carry out the hit after the identities of the two men were revealed so quickly following the assassination due to the tenacity of the Royal Thai Police. 

They were also threatened by Mr Sandhu’s criminal network in British Columbia with whom he stayed in contact and worked with while travelling throughout Southeast Asia after he was forced to flee India in 2018 on the run from authorities there on the trail of his illicit drug production and distribution operations.

Canadian hitmen ‘suicidal’ as cops open murder conspiracy case after Thai police tour de force

Both men are former members of the Canadian armed forces

It is also reported that Canadian police had been hunting down Mr Lahrkamp as a fugitive on the basis of the Interpol Red Notice and the warrant for his arrest on suspicion of murder in Phuket on February 4th last as there were no outstanding warrants in Canada in relation to him.

Join the Thai News forum, follow Thai Examiner on Facebook here
Receive all our stories as they come out on Telegram here
Follow Thai Examiner here

Further reading:

Canadian hitmen ‘suicidal’ as cops open murder conspiracy case after Thai police tour de force

Death penalty may be a problem as two hitmen in Sandhu case are named by police seeking arrests of the pair

Phuket tourist murder on Friday night was an international gangland hit on a known drug player

Fingerprints being sent to Canada – African murder suspect is Nigerian and not South African as reported

Top Thai drug suppression czar says notorious Asia Pacific drug syndicate could be about to fall after seizure

Drug trafficking convictions linked with Pattaya Hells Angels Biker plot quashed by Supreme Court

Drug boom with ya ice for sale on Twitter and 24 year old drugs kingpin nabbed with ฿800 million in the bank

Golden Triangle drugs threat aired in parliament, claims of senior police officers being involved in trafficking

‘Lupus Taiwan’ drug fiend and K Nompong mixer arrested by police squad including the Police Chief

New yaba production recipe behind drug shipments across Thailand as the kingdom fights a lethal war

Drug police put retraction behind them to smash billion baht Myanmar drug operation in Bangkok raid

Drug lords using an Australian gang to ship concealed drugs to Australia and Canada – more arrests promised

Danish man arrested, facing charges after Pattaya drug-dealing sting at local hospital coffee shop

Nigerian drug dealer betrayed in Phuket as local police receive tip-off that led them to his arrest

Criminal probe launched in Bangkok after six drug users were found dead after suffering acute cardiac issues

Gamblers and hosts at illegal gambling dens are being jailed as massive crackdown proceeds apace

Top Thai and US drug suppression officials warn of the use of cryptocurrencies in the drug trade

Drug police put retraction behind them to smash billion baht Myanmar drug operation in Bangkok raid

Use of cocaine and cannabis is still highly illegal in Thailand with very serious legal consequences

Sex, drugs and alcohol as Chiang Rai party-goers arrested in the midst of the growing virus emergency

One of the biggest drug dealers in the South flees home as Thai police and army move against him

Thai drug dealers go high tech with online social media accounts the key mode of distribution

Elite Thai police internal security unit arrests Thai police captain for drug dealing in Nakhon Phanom

Italian living with Thai wife on Koh Phangan arrested for dealing after drugs found in the post

Evil drugs trade in Songkhla sees Thai woman burned alive by her family for 300 grams of ice missing in village