Malaysian contractor sentenced to death over murder of wife and two children

SIBU - A teenage girl posted on her Facebook page on Fathers Day last year that her dad was an ordinary man but a "great" person.

Less than a month after her posting on June 17, Christine Tiang Soon Ai, her mother and two-year-old brother were murdered by her father.

Yesterday Christine's father, land clearing contractor Jacob Tiang Lee Yee, 45, was sentenced to death for their murders.

High Court judge Justice Supang Lian also sentenced Jacob to 15 years impri­sonment for attempting to kill another son, 17-year-old Vincent Tiang Soon Thai.

Jacob was found guilty of the murder of Christine, her mother Ling Yung Ming, 40, and toddler Victor Tiang Soon Sheng at their house in Lorong 1B in Pulau Li Hua, an affluent residential precinct here at between 6.20am and 9.50am on July 5, 2013.

Jacob had reportedly gassed his family in the master bedroom of their house after giving each of them sleeping pills.

Vincent, who survived his father's gruesome act, told the court during the trial that Jacob had committed the offences out of desperation due to huge business debts.

Vincent said his father owed people up to RM3 million(S$1.13 million).

Christine, 14, had made a Fathers Day posting on her Facebook page: "My father is the most ordinary daddy in the world. He is an ordinary man but he is great!"

Jacob was charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code, which provided for the mandatory death sentence by hanging.

He was charged with the attempted murder of his other son, under Section 307 of the Penal Code.

Justice Supang said the prosecution had proved beyond reasonable doubt that Jacob had committed all the offences he was accused of committing.

On the sentence for attempting to murder Vincent, the judge said she had to pass a deterrent sentence as his father's crime would forever be etched in the son's memory.

Justice Supang allowed an application by Jacob to visit the graveyard of his three dead family members under the escort of prison officers.

Speaking through his counsel Ben Lau, Jacob said he wanted to visit the graves to repent before them.

Vincent, when called by deputy public prosecutor Mohd Azrul Faidz, declined to give his impact statement.

The date for the visit to the graves has yet to be fixed.