Monday 06 July 2015

Playing Mahjong to Honor the Dead

Mourners play mahjong near a coffin during a funeral wake.MANILA Philippines 01 July 2015 - In the Philippines, gambling isn’t just a past time, but a way to honor the dead. Betting games, mah jong, and card tables are often set up at Filipino wakes, or paglalamay, where the tradition is to keep a 24-hour vigil over the deceased until the burial.

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Mahjong partner killed after thefts

High Court judge Clare-Marie Beeson was told the killing took place when Luo went to the flat on Tai Wo Hau Estate to play mahjong. Luo, who has two children in the mainland, chatted with Lee after arriving early. Lee then fell asleep as she waited for two more friends to arrive and play. Luo took her chance to steal seven rings, three necklaces and HK$2,000 (260 USD, €195) in cash from the sleeping senior citizen.

Diamond rings

When Lee woke up she discovered that Luo had stolen some of her diamond rings. Lee started to scream and Luo covered her face with her hands until the old woman stopped breathing. Luo then quickly fled the scene of the crime. Lee was subsequently found unconscious on the floor when her flatmate returned.
Paramedics certified her dead by suffocation. A medical examiner told the court that a post-mortem examination showed the victim had bruises to her nose, mouth and chin. 
Appealing for leniency, a defense lawyer said Luo did not expect her stealing from Lee to have fatal consequences.
Luo had no intention of killing Lee before going to the flat to play mahjong. She would not have known that her actions would result in the death of her friend. He argued Luo had stolen the jewelry and cash to pay for the medical fees of her daughter, who was receiving treatment in the mainland.
Justice Beeson adjourned the hearing.
Sentencing will take place on Wednesday and Luo was remanded in custody.

(The Standard)



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