Beach Road death: Man allegedly confessed to wife about killing business partner before fleeing to M'sia

The suspect allegedly turned on aircon in the shop to slow down the corpse's decomposition before fleeing.

Hannah Martens | November 18, 2022, 04:41 PM

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A 50-year-old man, Caleb Joshua Chai Shanmugam, was charged for the suspected murder of his business partner, 27-year-old Rachael Ang Yi Qing.

Ang was found in the premises of a shophouse at Beach Road on Nov. 13 after the police were alerted to a case of unnatural death.

She was initially reported missing.

She had sent a text message to her mother on the evening of Nov. 9, saying that she would be home for dinner soon.

At around 7:22pm that same day, Ang sent another message to her mother saying she would not be going home for dinner.

She became uncontactable after that.

As Ang did not return home after that day, her family and friends became worried and posted on Facebook to appeal for more information.

Chai Shanmugam was later detained in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, and sent back to Singapore for police investigations on Nov. 16.

Zaobao: Suspect turned on aircon in the shop to slow down body decomposition

Lianhe Zaobao reported that Ang was found with no lacerations on her body, but it was believed she could have been beaten to death.

Chai Shanmugam allegedly turned on the air conditioning within the shop premise to slow down the decomposition of the body before supposedly leaving Singapore to go into hiding in Johor.

Ang and Chai Shanmugam were business partners that ran the company Smart Click Services Pte Ltd.

Both worked at the company's stores on weekdays and sold paints and other home appliances.

The Zaobao reporter spoke to tenants staying in the residential unit right above the shop.

The four male tenants said that they only knew about the death case in the shop after the police went by on Nov. 13.

They were horrified and bought offerings to pay respect to the deceased after the police left the shop that day.

The tenants shared that Ang and Chai Shanmugam addressed each other as business partners.

The owner of Sze Thye Cake Shop, located right next to Ang and Chai Shanmugam's business, spoke with Mothership and shared that he was on friendly terms with both Ang and Chai Shanmugam.

They would greet one another when they met and described Ang as "polite and honest".

Suspect's wife reported him to the police

Zaobao also reported that Chai Shanmugam allegdly confessed to his wife about killing Ang.

The death case was subsequently brought to light after Chai Shanmugam's wife reported him to the police on Nov. 13.

Neighbours of Chai Shanmugam also told 8world News that several people came knocking on the suspect's door on Nov. 12 and Nov. 13, including the two police officers.

On Nov. 13 night, a neighbour also saw Chai Shanmugam's wife being escorted out of the house by the police, who carried at least three big bags of items.

The wife was not seen back at her home after that day.

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Top photo from Fiona Tan and Singapore Police Force