Philippine sin city was magnet for Briton charged in HK

Philippine sin city was magnet for Briton charged in HK

ANGELES CITY, Philippines - A wealthy British banker charged over grisly twin murders in Hong Kong was a regular in a shabby red-light district of the Philippines where he liked to flash his cash and was treated like a king.

The women in skimpy outfits working the short stretch of go-go and hostess bars of Angeles City remember Rurik Jutting fondly.

At the cramped Del Rio bar, workers said he would swig bottles of a local low-calorie beer while handing out cash, buying everyone rounds of drinks and keeping an eye on one of the dancers, who would become his girlfriend.

Women would rush to the door when they saw Jutting arrive and lead him to his favourite spot, a mouldy fake-leather couch that they covered with a pink blanket so he would not get rashes on his legs, said 26-year-old hostess Joy Reyes.

"He's a big spender. Everyone would welcome him whenever he's here. It also doesn't hurt that he is handsome," she said.

Jutting would pull out a folded wad of cash from his right pocket, and would peel off notes from the bundle to give away, according to bartender Linda Laida, 43.

"It shows that he's a banker. He knows how to count his money fast and knew exactly how much he was giving out," Laida said.

Relationship break-up

The women at the Del Rio said Jutting would spend up to 20,000 pesos (S$574) a night at the bar - the equivalent of an annual income for many people in the Philippines.

Jutting had been a regular there since January, and soon began dating one of the hostesses who would later appear in photos with him on his Facebook page, according to her colleagues.

But the two apparently broke up in August after he was seen with a different woman on his arm, they said. That was the last time they saw him there.

The ex-girlfriend, who now works at another Angeles bar, did not return messages from AFP seeking comment. A co-worker said on Wednesday that she had not reported to work for four days.

Jutting was charged with murder this week in Hong Kong, where he worked as a securities trader for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, after police found two dead Indonesian women in his luxury apartment.

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