Sunday, October 27, 2013

Gang Link in Alamo Attack / 2 ex-cons planned robbery -- homeowner, intruder shot dead

By PETE BENNETT - Contra Costa Watch EMAIL
Phone: 510-460-5641
Posted: 06/13/2013

Reposted to Protect My Sons





Gang Link in Alamo Attack / 2 ex-cons planned robbery -- homeowner, intruder shot dead

Published 4:00 am, Thursday, January 6, 2000

2000-01-06 04:00:00 PDT ALAMO -- Two gunmen behind a fatal botched robbery in an exclusive Alamo home were members of a Stockton street gang who carefully planned the invasion, police said yesterday.
But if the intruders were counting on little resistance, they got more than they expected when, carrying semiautomatic pistols, they burst into the home on Incline Green Lane shortly before 6 p.m. Tuesday. The home's owner, Kim Fang, an accomplished marksman, shot one robber dead and critically wounded another, police said.
Fang, 49, was wounded during the gunfight and died hours later at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, where he had worked for eight years as a plastic surgeon until his retirement in 1994.
The dead robber was identified last night as Mesa Kasem, 22, and his wounded accomplice as Soknoeum Nem, 21, both of Stockton.
Contra Costa County Sheriff's Capt. George Lawrence said the gunmen were convicted felons and members of the Asian Street Walkers gang. They were being investigated for similar crimes against Asians elsewhere in the Bay Area.
Nem is a parolee classified as a violent offender with convictions for assault, burglary and auto theft.
Kasem, who served prison time for shooting a woman in Stockton, was subsequently detained behind bars as a "lifer" by the Immigration and Naturalization Service because he was considered a violent criminal.
Kasem, however, successfully fought his INS detention and was released.
Last night, police served search warrants at the Stockton homes where Nem and Kasem lived, but investigators declined to say what, if anything, was seized from the properties.
Investigators disclosed yesterday that they found a blue Mazda that Nem and Kasem had rented in Stockton, parked a block away from the Fang home. Inside, they found a handwritten note with Kim Fang's name and address. The suspects had used their own names to rent the car, police said.
Investigators also were able to provide a clearer picture of how the robbery attempt went awry.
Nem and Kasem were probably after jewelry or cash in the home, Lawrence said. There were no statements or demands from the two men when they rushed the house, police said.
One of the suspects was attacked with a frying pan by Fang's wife, Winnie Fang, who answered their knock on the front door. Winnie Fang, an anesthesiologist, was shot once in the chest but was expected to be released last night from Stanford Medical Center.
Her brother, Richard Law, was in the living room and came to his sister's aid when he heard her screams, struggling with the suspects before he was ordered to the floor. A nanny, Melee Jung, was pistol-whipped by one intruder.
"I think they were fighting for their lives," Lawrence said.
It was not until Kim Fang, working in an upstairs office, heard the commotion and came downstairs that the shooting started, police said. Exactly who fired first was still being sorted out yesterday, but investigators said Kim Fang mortally wounded Kasem with rounds to the head, chest and leg.
Nem, who was tied up with telephone cords by the family and held for police, is in Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley in fair condition. He is under arrest but is heavily sedated and has not yet been interviewed by police. He is expected to be charged with murder and robbery.
The Fangs' two children, ages 10 and 13, were not hurt during the attack and ran to a neighbor's home for help, Lawrence said.
Court records said the surviving suspect's nickname is "Half Dead," and family members confirmed the unusual nickname, saying it stuck after Nem -- who lived as a young child in war-torn Cambodia -- survived when a bomb he was playing with exploded. The family moved to Connecticut in 1983 to escape the Khmer Rouge.

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