Tiles clacked at the mahjong tables in the main hall of the Hop Sing Tong, the slow cadence of a typical afternoon at one of Los Angeles’ oldest institutions.
The quiet broke when an intruder entered the Chinatown building and started to argue with a man in his 60s playing the game at a felt-covered table. He pulled a knife and attacked the man and another who tried to defend him, slashing both fatally in the neck, law enforcement sources said.
One of the victims was the president of the tong, a Chinese fraternal organisation. The attacker, thought by police to be a former member of the tong in his 30s, fled and is still at large.
Los Angeles police detectives are now trying to sort out a mystery that conjures memories of the violence wrought by tongs in the past.
A law enforcement source told the Los Angeles Times that police believe they