Auckland, Mar 6(ANI): The prime suspect in the murder of Indian-origin taxi-driver Hiren Mohini was a kitchen worker at an Auckland casino, a workmate has claimed.
Jack at Sky City said he had worked with the suspect, a young Asian man, known to his colleagues as "George" for close to two years in the kitchen.
Jack also said that he knew of at least three Sky City staff, who had been interviewed by police about George.
"They seemed pretty adamant that it was him. He was their number one suspect," Stuff.co.nz quoted Jack, as saying.
According to reports, staff who had seen CCTV footage of the suspect, released by police days after Mohini was fatally stabbed in his cab on January 31, initially "joked" about the similarity between the pictured man and George.
Police say Hiren, who picked up the man from outside the casino, was killed for a 15.20 dollar unpaid fare to Mt Eden.
"People had seen the photo and we had sort of joked about how it looked a lot like him. And then it turned out that one of the people who had been interviewed told one of the [kitchen workers] who I was working with that he had been interviewed about it being George," Jack said.
"Then later on that day we talked to one of the other [staff] who had also been interviewed ... and he went into detail over what the police had asked him and what he'd told them," he added.
He further said he last saw George just before Christmas, and police told interviewed staff members that George was believed to have gone to China.
"The people who tried to contact him to get him to work, just got told he'd left the country. They haven't been able to get a hold of him since," he said.
"He didn't seem like the sort of person who'd want to stab somebody or want to kill somebody. He was fairly quiet, kept to himself. I've never seen him get aggravated or anything like that. He was happy to joke around. He just seemed like a normal Chinese guy trying to make it in New Zealand," he added. (ANI)