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1 Filipino, 4 Nepalis set to be sentenced for jewelry store robbery

02 November 2022

by The SUN


More than $600k worth  of gold jewelry was taken during the 2020 robbery (TVB photo)

A Filipino bartender who admitted holding a knife as he announced a robbery in a jewelry shop in Yuen Long more than two years ago, is due to be sentenced at the High Court on Friday, along with one of his four co-accused.

Mark Jordan Abella, who is now 33, readily admitted taking part in the lightning robbery shortly after he was taken to the Yau Ma Tei police station after his arrest on Oct. 1, 2020.

He and his four accused, along with three other men who remain at large, had been charged with conspiring to rob the Tai Sun Jewellery & Gold Shop on the ground floor of Fu Ho Bldg, 3-7 Kau Yuk Road, Yuen Long at around 11am on Mar 3, 2020.


Just over $600,000 worth of gold jewelry was taken during the robbery, and was not recovered.

Abella, along with Gurung Ashish, Ale Magar Krishpoo, Raj Ghale and Gurung Sanjan all appeared before High Court Judge Audrey Campbell-Moffat on Tuesday and reiterated their guilty plea, before their respective lawyers presented their mitigation.

Ashish and Krishpoo, who were aged 17 and 16 respectively when the robbery was committed and merely acted as lookouts, had their mitigation hearing held separately.


They are scheduled to be sentenced tomorrow along with Ghale, who appeared in court on a wheelchair and whose lawyer said had suffered from physical and mental disability. He had just been released from a Drug Addiction Treatment Centre (DATC) when Sanjan recruited him for the heist.

Abella and Sanjan will be sentenced at the same time on Friday.

All five accused, including the underaged Krishpoo, had been in detention since their arrests between July and October 2020.

In his statement to the police, Abella also pointed to Sanjan as the one who had asked him to join the robbery one day before it was carried out.


Abella, like the two other defendants, had a string of records for past minor offences, including shoplifting, theft of a bicycle, violating a probation order, and gambling.

His lawyer said the Filipino was born in Hong Kong, and lived with his mother, daughter and a girlfriend, who appeared in court to show support.

Abella, along with his mother and girlfriend had written three letters to the court to express remorse, including one where he apologized to the staff of the shop who may have been traumatized by the incident.

Press for details

While he was tasked with announcing the holdup and hold a knife to threaten staff, his lawyer said Abella did not take part in smashing the display cabinets and scooping out the jewelry as he got scared.

But the lawyer’s further attempt to mitigate Abella's role in the robbery conspiracy was stopped short by Judge Campbell-Moffat who said the defendant had one day to “cool off” but did not, and went on with taking part in the robbery.

The older defendants all pointed to a man who went by the name “Tyson” as the mastermind of the robbery. He managed to evade arrest, along with another accomplice called “Kale” and the driver of the getaway vehicle.


Abella, Ghale, Sanjan, Tyson and Kale entered the shop wearing masks and caps. Abella announced the robbery while holding a knife and acting as a lookout. The other men were armed with hammers and proceeded to smash display cabinets and scoop out jewelry which they stuffed into a black bag.

After just one to two minutes, the men fled with seven gold rings and 71 gold bracelets worth a total of $605,091.

CCTV footage showed the five getting off a car with license plate JN9585 before they entered the shop. Around 5:55pm of the same day, a passer-by saw the abandoned car without a  number plate at Yau Pok Road, Tai Sang Wai, about 7 km away from the shop and made a report to the police.

Officers who checked the car found a knife, an ax, a hammer, three surgical masks, six plastic gloves, 16 labor gloves and some clothes inside the car. It was then confirmed that the get-away car was reported missing by its owner to the police on Feb 24, 2020. Its real number plate was VU8036. 

The CCTV also captured the Ashish and Khrispoo on the rooftop opposite the jewelry shop about an hour before, and shortly after, the robbery.

They were then seen on CCTV entering the Yoho Mall in Yuen Long where Khrispoo bought a shirt. Police investigators managed to trace them by checking credit card transaction records.

Next to be arrested was Ghale, whose fingerprints were lifted from inside a door of the getaway car. He initially denied taking part in the robbery when arrested on Jul 29, 2020 but later admitted his role in video-recorded interviews.

Sanjan was arrested on Aug 1, 2020 and also admitted taking part in the robbery but said he did not receive any money. However, Abella said in his own confession that Sanjay had given him $10,000 as his share in the loot.

Abella also said it was Sanjay who had invited him to meet up with the other men a day before the robbery. They all rode in a car which was driven to the targeted shop.

After the robbery, Tyson reportedly told Abella not to tell anyone about what happened or his family would be harmed.

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