Vietnamese Canadian ‘possessed by demon’ gets life in jail for stabbing Hong Kong 7-Eleven owner to death

Bui Van-cuong, 32, found guilty of murder by unanimous verdict

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 13 July, 2017, 7:04am
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 July, 2017, 10:38am

A Canadian national who claimed he was possessed by a demon as he stabbed a local convenience store owner to death last year has been sentenced to life in jail.

Bui Van-cuong, 32, was found guilty of murder in a unanimous verdict at the Court of First ­Instance on Wednesday in the death of Cheng Ka-pui.

Sentencing Bui to mandatory life imprisonment, Madam Justice Maggie Poon Man-kay called the case “unfortunate”.

The guilty verdict was returned shortly after lunch, even though the panel of seven jurors was ushered into a deliberation room in the morning.

The fatal attack took place on March 8 last year at Cheng’s 7-Eleven store at Pitt Street in Yau Ma Tei, the court heard earlier.

After Bui was arrested, he told police during a video interview that he was possessed by a demon and that he was taking part in a game whose challenge was to harm and kill someone.

During the interrogation, he told police he saw Cheng clad in an impenetrable bulletproof vest on the day in question.

Bui went on to call a closed-circuit television video clip fake.

The court heard earlier that, subsequent to stabbing Cheng, Bui ran off to steal a knife from a nearby supermarket. He explained to police during the investigation that the knife was for threatening their colleagues so they would shoot him dead – thereby completing the game.

He also told them he was not influenced by alcohol, nor suffering from any mental conditions.

But later, testifying at the trial, Bui claimed he had made the entire story up.

On the witness stand, he instead asserted that he had ended up in the city as part of a failed plan to become a monk in Tibet.

The court heard that, on the night, Bui went into Cheng’s shop three times. On the second occasion he made off with potato chips without paying, prompting a row between the men. Bui then left.

When he returned to the store the third time, he was carrying the stolen knife.

During a struggle, Bui stabbed Cheng. The store owner was taken to Kwong Wah Hospital, then transferred to Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

Cheng suffered a heart injury that caused massive blood loss, and he died on March 14 last year.