KUALA LUMPUR - Eyewitnesses recounted horrifying scenes of blood and injuries after the explosion at the Cherry Blossom nightclub in Sun Complex here, with some saying that they saw an object drop to the ground just before the blast.
Chia Kian, a caretaker at the nightclub, said he saw people lying on the street covered in blood soon after the explosion ripped through the entrance at 4.25am yesterday. It resulted in the death of car jockey Tiong Kwang Yie, 36, and 12 others injured.
"The sound was so loud that even people in Jalan Alor could hear it," Chia said of the stretch about a kilometre away.
He recognised two car jockeys among the wounded. "One suffered injuries to his leg, but Tiong's face was completely obliterated," he said, adding that the Sarawakian only started work at the club recently.
Chia said he had no idea why the club was targeted. "We do not have bad ties with anyone. I don't want to speculate on the reasons, but I don't think it was an act of revenge," he added.
Shaun Sylvester, 29, the duty manager of a hotel in the Bukit Bintang area, said he was filing a report when he heard a loud bang. As he emerged from the hotel, he saw a few people covered in blood "while others were in a state of panic".
"There were taxis and an ambulance, and the club workers were helping the injured into the vehicles," he said yesterday afternoon while waiting for the police to defuse an undetonated grenade from underneath his Toyota Camry.
30-year-old grenades leave one dead and 12 injured
They were obsolete hand grenades made in 1983.
Yet, when one of them exploded outside Cherry Blossom Night Club along Jalan Bukit Bintang, it left one man dead and 12 others injured.
Sources revealed that the explosive devices were not locally-made.
City CID chief Senior Asst Comm Gan Kong Ming said there were only two hand grenades at the scene, with one exploding at around 4.25am while another was found intact under a Toyota Camry.
"We did not want to take any risks with the second grenade and a bomb disposal squad detonated it at the scene," he said when met in Bukit Bintang here yesterday.
The grenades were thrown from the second floor of the building to the ground floor at around 4.25am yesterday, killing 36-year-old Tiong Kwang Yie, who works as a car jockey at the club. Twelve others were injured.
A Toyota Alphard, Toyota Camry, Mazda and BMW were also damaged in the blast.
SAC Gan said the injured victims included a Thai male, a Singaporean male, and four female Chinese nationals, all aged between 31 and 56.
"They were patrons and workers at the night club," he added.
City police chief Senior Deputy Com Datuk Tajuddin Md Isa gave an assurance that Bukit Bintang was safe and under control and brushed off rumours of militancy in the case.
"There is nothing to connect this incident to militancy. The focus of the investigation is still on gangsterism," he added.
Federal Secret Societies, Gambling and Vice Division (D7) principal assistant director Senior Asst Comm Roslee Chik said initial investigations revealed that the bomb attack was gang-related.
SAC Roslee said the attack might have been a turf war or revenge.
He added that they were studying CCTV footage from the area.