VANCOUVER - A double homicide victim, killed in a hail of gunfire at a Burnaby, B.C., hotel Monday morning, was well-known gangster Sukhveer Singh Dhak, according to reports.
Dhak, 28, who was shot to death along with bodyguard Thomas Mantel at the Executive Hotel Burnaby lobby on Lougheed Highway, was facing drug trafficking charges.
Since October, he had been in and out of B.C. Supreme Court in Surrey, B.C.
“It appears they were victims of an apparent targeted attack,” Sgt. Jennifer Pound said, who confirmed B.C.’s organized crime task force and police canine services were both at the crime scene.
In 2010, Dhak’s older brother, Gurmit Singh Dhak, was killed in a parking lot shooting at Metrotown Mall, the same year the younger sibling was charged with counselling to commit aggravated assault.
Gordon Shank, whose condo sits about 150 metres from the hotel, said he initially thought the gunfire was firecrackers being discharged at 11:30 a.m.
“I thought it was very strange to be lighting off firecrackers at this time of day.”
Within minutes he walked out to his balcony for a cigarette and saw police and ambulances arrive at the scene.
He said his first thoughts were about his son, who walks by the hotel every day on his way to school.
Shank, a ballistics industry consultant, said the gunfire sounded much like the popping noise that comes from small handguns as opposed to an assault rifle.
“What I heard was approximately four shots in rapid succession, and a brief pause and then four or five more shots, also in rapid succession.”
Joe Ennis, director of hotel services, said his first priority was the safety of staff and guests. He added no one else was injured in the shootings, and most guests were not inside at the time.
“(Staff) are a little bit upset — definitely upset. It’s a bit of a shock.”