An East Bank Demerara restaurateur and his family were left traumatised on Monday evening after five bandits, posing as customers, robbed them of an undisclosed amount of cash and other valuables.
The attack occurred around 9pm at the Lot 376 Craig Public Road residence that also houses the Hing Fat Chinese Restaurant and Off Licence Liquor store, which is operated by Zhuocheng Dai. He is also involved in a fish glue operation.
During the robbery, Dai, his wife and two children, ages seven and five, were present. He was gun-butted to his head, while they we
re unharmed in the attack. The armed bandits carted off an undisclosed amount of foreign and local currency, two bags of fish glue, three cellular phones and two iPads.
When Stabroek News visited the scene yesterday, the restaurant was closed for business. Efforts to contact Dai and his wife also proved futile since they were at the police station.
However, a relative told Stabroek News that the restaurant is usually closed around 8.30pm every day but on Monday evening it remained open because two of the bandits, posing as customers, had entered the restaurant and ordered beers. They later ordered a case of beers after which they were seen making a call.
Shortly afterward, they were joined by three other men, who exited a vehicle. The five men waited for the other customers to clear out of the restaurant and then attacked Dai, who was behind the counter and tied him up. They then held his wife at gunpoint and forced her to the upper flat of their house, where they demanded that she “hand over the US money.”
The woman, in fear for her life and that of her two children, one of whom was asleep, handed over her valuables. The men then grabbed the two bags of fish glue and made good their escape in the vehicle.
The police were alerted but neighbours yesterday expressed their anger at what they say was the poor response. One woman said that after they were called, the ranks informed the residents that there were no vehicles available for them to visit the scene. As a result, one resident decided to drive to the station in order to transport them to the scene.
Up to late yesterday afternoon, no arrest had been made.