Juan Ignacio Blanco  


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Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Argument
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: September 9, 1922
Date of arrest: 7 days after
Date of birth: 1895
Victim profile: His employer, Sing Lee, 33
Method of murder: Hitting his head on the stove
Location: Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
Status: Executed by hanging at Armley Gaol in Leeds on 5th January 1923

A case which is notable for the stupidity involved in trying to conceal the crime.

Sing Lee, 33-years-old, owned a chain of laundries and lived over the premises at his shop at 231 Crookes Road, Sheffield. Also living over the shop was 27-year-old employee, Doon, who had worked for Sing Lee for only three or four weeks. Another of Lee's employees was Lily Siddall, and as Lily was finishing work for the day, on Saturday 9th September 1922, Lee asked her if she could work the following morning. Lily agreed and returned the next day. It came as quite a surprise to her to be told by Doon that Sing Lee, "Go back China. Business belong me."

Lily became even more suspicious the day after Lee's absence. Doon got labourers in to dig a hole in the cellar floor. Doon was later seen trying to move a heavy trunk. Lily became thoroughly alarmed when a female friend of Lee's turned up at the laundry asking why Lee had failed to meet her for their date the evening before.

Mrs Siddall pondered on matters for a few days before discussing her suspicions with Sing Lee's relatives and then reporting it to the local police. Officers attended the laundry around midnight on the following Friday. They gained entrance and found Sing Lee's body hidden in a tin trunk and buried in the hole in the cellar under several tons of coal and coke. Sing Lee had been battered and there was a rope around his neck.

When Doon came up for trial he admitted that he had been present when Lee had died. Doon claimed that he had fallen out with his employer after asking him not to take opium. The pair had, he said, struggled before Lee had fallen over and injured himself. It was not a defence that impressed the jury, especially as police could find no trace of opium on the premises, and they returned a verdict of guilty. Lee Doon was sentenced to death. His appeal was dismissed and he was hanged at Armley Gaol, Leeds, on 5th January 1923 by Thomas Pierrepoint and Thomas Phillips.



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