An alleged member of the New York Chinatown gang was pulled off a flight to Hong Kong, minutes before takeoff, as he tried to flee to China because he is suspected of executing two women and burning down their apartment.
US authorities boarded the Delta Airlines flight at John F Kennedy International Airport on Monday afternoon and hauled away the unidentified man in handcuffs.
Police believe he is responsible for shooting Xiao L. Li, 70, and Yong Hua Chen, 36, in the head at close range on June 29 then setting fire to their apartment in Chinatown.
Horrific: The alleged gangster suspected of shooting the women, age 70 and 36, in the head at close range then torching this Chinatown apartment
The New York Post reports that the man decided to flee after he saw police impounding his car to search for evidence into the horrific murders.
Authorities believe he planned to slip into Beijing from Hong Kong to get even farther away from the reach of American law enforcement.
Witnesses said the man's hands and fingers were covered with tattoos signifying him as a 'hardcore gang member.'
Just in time: The flight to Hong Kong was minutes to taking off from John F Kennedy International Airport when authorities boarded it
The two murdered women were believed to be in the sex trade and neither of them lived in the burned apartment on Henry Street, which was a known brothel, the Gothamist reports.
After the fire a man wearing gloves was spotted running from the building.
Police say they don't have enough evidence yet to charge the gangster with the murders. However, they were able to arrest him on unrelated charges.
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