Famous Hong Kong gangster died of cancer in custody

Vastavam web:An infamous Hong Kong gangster, who specialised in armed jewellery heists and became the city’s most wanted fugitive after a dramatic prison escape in the 1980s, died of cancer in custody today.Yip Kai-foon who was re-captured in a hail of bullets in 1996 after years on the run, was a symbol of a more violent time in Hong Kong, which was rife with triad gangs — organised Chinese criminal networks steeped in murky traditions and violent histories.Yip reportedly started down his path of violent crime at the age of 19, spreading fear, and robbing gold shops, which were considered some of the most dangerous places in the city.
He and his gang were known for stealing millions of Hong Kong dollars in merchandise per heist and spraying bullets at police as they made their getaway.He was 55 when he died in the early hours of today, a government statement said, without naming Yip.His criminal exploits were portrayed in crime drama Trivisa which won best picture at this month’s Hong Kong Film Awards.The gangster was initially jailed in 1985 but made a daring escape from a hospital while he was receiving treatment, reportedly threatening a guard with a broken glass bottle and later hijacking a van in 1989.Yip and his gang spread terror on the streets again until he was recaptured and jailed for 41 years after a 1996 shootout with police where he was shot in the back and paralysed from the waist down.He was a known associate of crime boss Cheung Tze-keung, who kidnapped the eldest son of the city’s richest man Li Ka- shing and was sentenced to death in China in the late 1990s.