Nick Chan murder trial: star witness says gang leader paid $10K for murders
Witness' identity protected by a publication ban
Murdering a rival gangster resulted in a $10,000 payday back in the FOB vs. FK gang war, according to the prosecution's star witness at Nick Chan's murder trial.
That witness — whose identity is protected by a publication ban and who has been ordered by the judge to be called 'GH' — began his testimony on Monday at Chan's murder trial.
Chan gave GH, who was an associate of his, a CD full of photos of rival gangsters with instructions to get to know the faces so he would know who to kill, according to testimony heard today.
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At a meeting in a karaoke bar in 2008 GH told the jury that Chan announced a payment system that would see FOB members awarded cash for information on rivals' locations or for harming a member of the FK.
The system was "something Nick Chan wanted to implement."
GH said it was around that time when his close friend, Roger Chin was shot and killed which he says "devastated" him.
"I stopped selling drugs and I just focused on hunting down anyone who was FK," said GH.
GH said he and Chan were close friends, dining and drinking together with GH helping in a leadership role at times.
Chan is accused of leading the FOB gang through a bloody seven-year period that saw 25 people killed. GH testified he was a member of the group through that time period.
The triple murder at the Bolsa Restaurant took place on Jan.1, 2009 and was allegedly orchestrated by Chan. He is charged with first-degree murder in the death of rival gangster Sanjeev Mann.
Mann's associate Aaron Bendle, who had been kidnapped the night before and used as bait, was also killed. And an innocent bystander, Keni Su'a was gunned down as he fled the restaurant after gunfire erupted.
Two other gangsters have already pleaded guilty to killing Bendle and Su'a.
GH is a confessed killer who was granted an immunity deal for his crimes and is eligible for parole later this year.
The jury heard GH and Chan had been friends since he was 18 years old. He and Chan avoided eye contact throughout the day's testimony.
But Chan's defence lawyer Dick Cairns called his client a "ready-made convenient scapegoat," in his opening statement to the jury.
Cairns called GH a "career criminal, a serial murderer" and not a credible witness.