Ipswich: Husband found meat cleaver allegedly used in attack at Chinese take away in shed - three days after police finished their search of the premises
14:55 28 March 2014
A blood-stained knife allegedly used by a Chinese takeaway kitchen worker to attack his boss was found in a shed at the premises three days after police had finished searching the premises, a court has heard.
Michael Wan, the ex-husband of Linda Tian, noticed the blood stained meat cleaver sticking out from under a freezer in a food preparation shed at the New China restaurant in Garrick Way, Ipswich on November 6, Ipswich Crown Court was told.
Miss Tian was allegedly attacked by kitchen worker Lianjun Sun with the cleaver in the kitchen at the premises on November 1 and a team of trained officers conducted a search of the premises on November 3.
Giving evidence at the trial of Sun, who is accused of attempting to murder Miss Tian, Detective Sergeant Carl Dye told the court that on the day of the alleged attack on Miss Tian a cleaver was found in bushes at the rear of the premises and it was initially felt this was probably the weapon used in the alleged attack.
A number of other knives were found in the food preparation shed during the detailed police search on November 3 but three days later Mr Wan found a blood stained cleaver protruding from under a freezer in the shed.
Cross-examined by defence barrister Martyn Levett, Det Sgt Dye agreed that Sun was arrested within 90 minutes of the alleged attack on Miss Tian and could not have returned to the premises after that.
Det Sgt Dye agreed there had been an inquiry into the discovery of the cleaver under the freezer and the officers involved in the search had been unable to say definitively that the cleaver wasn’t under the freezer when they searched the food preparation shed.
“There is a mystery – they can’t confirm it was there and they can’t confirm it wasn’t,” said Mr Levett.
“All we know is that from 4pm on November 1 to 5pm on November 5 the scene was exclusively police controlled and no member of the public, no residents of the premises or the owner was there,” he added.
Sun, 51, of Cromer Road, Ipswich, has denied attempting to murder Miss Tian on November 1 last year but has admitted a less serious charge of wounding her with intent to cause her grievous bodily harm.
It has been alleged that Sun delivered two “massive” blows to 50-year-old Miss Tian’s neck.
One caused an injury measuring 12cm from the midline of her throat to her left ear and the other blow to the back of the neck fractured the top of her spine.
The court heard that the second blow missed fully severing her spinal column by 1mm and that “severe” force would have been required to inflict the two injuries.
Two off-duty members of staff in an adjacent flat were alerted by Miss Tian’s screams and carried her from the restaurant kitchen to near their front door where she was assisted by passers by and paramedics before being taken to hospital.
She subsequently underwent two operations and remained in the critical care unit for some time.
The trial continues.