Qing YUE CHEN
Qing Chen was last seen at Dulwich Hill, Sydney 24 October 2000.He is known to frequent the inner suburbs of Sydney. The
white Toyota Corona, registration number OQK-602, Qing was using at the time
he went missing was located at the Star City Casino car park on 27 October
2000. Family and friends have not heard from Qing since and grave fears are
held for his safety and welfare.
|Reported missing to: Marrickville Police Station|
The NSW Government has announced a $100,000 reward for information on the suspicious disappearance of a man from Sydney’s Chinatown precinct.
Qing Yue Chen was last seen by his flatmate as he left their Dulwich Hill unit about 11am on Tuesday 24 October 2000. It’s believed that on this morning, Mr Chen borrowed money from his employer and withdrew another sum from his personal bank account before attending a Sydney casino.
The 39-year-old later walked to Chinatown, where he made a distressed phone call to a friend just before 1pm. No conversation was made, but Mr Chen’s voice was recognised among several unknown males.
Mr Chen has not been seen or heard from since. Police located his white Toyota Corona three days later in the car park of the casino.
A coronial inquest in 2008 concluded Mr Chen was deceased, but could not determine the manner or cause of his demise.
State Crime Command’s Unsolved Homicide Team formed Strike Force Shoult to investigate Mr Chen’s disappearance, and has welcomed today’s reward announcement.
“While it is not clear what happened to Mr Chen after he made that phone call, we do suspect foul play,” Detective Inspector David Laidlaw of the NSW Police Homicide Squad said.
“We hope this reward will encourage someone with vital information to come forward and help close the book on this case,” Det Insp Laidlaw said.
A hard-working taxi driver, Mr Chen had been looking forward to establishing a home in Sydney for his wife and newborn son, who were still living in China at the time of his disappearance.
Anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Shoult investigators should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided in confidence and anonymously.
The reward of up to $100,000 is payable for information that leads to the conviction of the person or people responsible for the death or disappearance of Mr Chen.
Anyone with information about this incident should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page: https://www1.police.nsw.gov.au/. Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence. We remind people they should not report crime information via our Facebook and Twitter pages.
Detectives renew appeal for information
about the suspected murder of missing Chinese man
NSW Homicide Squad detectives investigating the suspected murder of a Chinese man more than seven years ago are renewing their appeal for information from the community.
Father-of-one Qing Yue Chen was last seen by his flatmate as he left their Dulwich Hill unit about 11am on Tuesday 24 October 2000.
Mr Chen's white Toyota Corona was found by police three days later in the carpark of the Star City Casino in Sydney.
Strike Force Shoult was established to investigate Mr Chen's disappearance, with inquiries continuing by detectives from the State Crime Command's Homicide Squad.
Detectives are working to establish Mr Chen's movements after leaving his unit and have been focusing on a phone call he made to a friend from the Chinatown area about 1pm on the day of his last sighting.
Inquiries by detectives from the Homicide Squad and City Central Local Area Command indicate the 40-year-old might have met with foul play soon after meeting a person or persons in Chinatown after attending the casino earlier in the day.
Police are appealing to people who may have seen Mr Chen on this day or since, or who might have any other information that will assist with their inquiries.
The taxi-driver was a hard-working member of Sydney's Chinese community. He was looking forward to establishing a home in Sydney for his wife and newborn son. He was due to be reunited with them in November 2000 when they were due to arrive from China.
Mr Chen is described to police as being of Asian appearance, 168cm tall, with a thin build and short black hair.
Any members of the community with information about Mr Chen's disappearance are urged to contact Strike Force Shoult detectives via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Information can be provided in confidence and anonymously.
Qing Yue Chen, the taxi driver who disappeared from Chinatown in 2000, had in all probability been involved in money laundering, got greedy, put too much on the Star Casino tables for his own benefit and as a result was likely to have come to "a sticky end", a coroner said today.
Hugh Dillon, who held an inquest into Mr Chen's death, wound up the inquest today, saying he was satisfied Mr Chen, who had suffered from a gambling addition and had lost more than $365,000 in four years, was dead.
He had parked his car at the casino at 12.37 pm on October 24, 2000, had apparently called a friend 20 minutes later and had thereafter disappeared.
Mr Dillon said Mr Chen might have been approached by loan sharks at the casino. But given the scale of his losses which had been $8000 in 1997, $137,872 in 1998, $140,345 in 1999 and $79,405 till October 2000, it would be unlikely loan sharks would have been so patient.
Given Mr Chen's modest income, which would have been $60,000 working for two taxi companies, perhaps more with loans from friends, it was inconceivable he could have put more than a million dollars through the casino in that time without access to illicit funds.
A note had been found at Mr Chen's home in Lewisham Street, Dulwich Hill, after he disappeared saying that Mr Chen was meeting his former girlfriend, Lin Lan, at 1.05 pm the day he disappeared. But that did not necessarily mean Ms Lin was part of the plot, it was possible someone had lured Mr Chen into a trap by using her name.
Two anonymous callers to CrimeStoppers had alleged an affair between Lin Lan and the then Australian general manager of the Bank of China, Fugen Chen, and suggesting Mr Chen might have been extorting money from Fugen Chen. But Mr Dillon was disinclined to accept that scenario, given that the callers had not identified them and as Matthew Johnston, counsel for Ms Lin, had pointed out, someone might have been trying to "lay a false trail". He doubted Fugen Chen would have jeopardised his future by being involved in a plot to kill someone.
Mr Dillon said support for the money laundering scenario was reinforced by a report by Peter McClellan QC, as he then was, into the operations of Star City Casino in 2000, which found a number of irregular practices there, including money laundering.
He recommended that the Government announce a reward for information of the person or persons responsible for Mr Chen's death and for information leading to location of the remains.
His distressed voice at the end of the phone line was the last thing anyone ever heard from Qing Yue Chen, a Sydney taxi driver who had gambling debts of $365,000 when he disappeared.
Almost 12 years after Mr Chen, 39, vanished from Chinatown on October 24, 2000, and four years since a coroner found he probably met a "sticky end", the NSW government has announced a $100,000 reward for information into his disappearance.
The case led to suspicions of money laundering and extortion, explored at the inquest in 2008.
Police said Mr Chen left his Dulwich Hill unit about 11am that day, borrowed some money from his employer, withdrew money from his own bank account and parked his car at Star City Casino, as it was then known.
He then walked to Chinatown, where he made a "distressed" phone call to a friend about 1pm, his voice heard among those of a group of unknown men.
Mr Chen has not been seen or heard from since.
At the coronial inquest, coroner Hugh Dillon said Mr Chen had most likely been involved in money laundering, got greedy and put too much on the casino tables, leading to his "sticky end".
Earning about $60,000 a year working for two taxi companies, Mr Chen racked up debts of $8000 in 1997, $137,872 in 1998, $140,345 in 1999 and $79,405 until October 2000, the inquest heard.
Mr Dillon said it was unlikely loan sharks would be so patient about recovering the debts, and it was not feasible he could have put more than $1 million through the casino during that time without access to some kind of illicit funds.
The coroner said the money-laundering scenario was reinforced by a report by Peter McClellan, QC, as he then was, into the operations of Star City Casino in 2000, which found a number of irregular practices there, including money laundering.
Detective Inspector David Laidlaw of the NSW Homicide Squad said it was still not clear what happened to Mr Chen after the phone call.
Police from Strike Force Shoult, set up to investigate Mr Chen's disappearance, said he was a hard working taxi driver who was trying to make a home in Sydney for his wife and son, who were living in China.
"We hope this reward will encourage someone with vital information to come forward and help close the book on this case," he said in a statement.
The reward is for information that leads to a conviction of whoever was responsible for his death.
Anyone with information is asked to contact investigators via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.