The killing of Ripudaman Singh Malik has all the hallmarks of a professional murder-for-hire, according to British Columbia’s former solicitor general, CTV News reported.
Kash Heed made the comments while discussing the challenges he believes investigators will face in finding Malik’s killer or killers.
Malik was gunned down on Thursday outside his Surrey business. Homicide investigators said a white Honda CRV pulled up more than two hours earlier, and that the occupants waited for Malik. The vehicle was later found burned in an alley nearby.
“These are the hallmarks of a hit person or hit persons, doing this type of work, and it’s quite common,” Kash Heed said, referencing the similarities to other shootings that have occurred in B.C.’s Lower Mainland, some linked to the ongoing gang conflict, CTV News reported.
“It’s going to be a difficult investigation, and the RCMP and other law enforcement agencies are really going to have to step up their game and try and find a confidential informant,” Heed said, adding that he believes police will have to find ways to guarantee the safety of anyone who assists with the investigation.
“There are people that will know what occurred to Mr. Malik a couple of days ago in Surrey, B.C.,” Heed said. “But they’re not going to come forward if, in fact, they fear for their safety.”
Malik is known to most as one of two men acquitted in the 1985 Air India bombings. But the 75-year-old has a long history within both the Surrey business and Sikh communities.
Independent journalist Gurpreet Singh said Malik was trying to get the rights to publish Sikh scriptures in Greater Vancouver, which outraged some separatist groups.
“That tour was cancelled because of the backlash he was getting from the Sikh community,” Singh said. “Malik was very upset about it, he acknowledged that during the conversation I had with him, but he never showed any signs of receiving any threats to his life,” CTV News reported.