Israeli man named as suspect in brutal murder in Taiwan
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Israeli man named as suspect in brutal murder in Taiwan

Oren Shlomo Mayer, said to be a drug dealer, suspected by police of dismembering Canadian teacher with machetes in Taipei before fleeing to Philippines

Illustrative: Taiwanese police officers in Taipei, March 26, 2009. (AP Photo/Wally Santana)
Illustrative: Taiwanese police officers in Taipei, March 26, 2009. (AP Photo/Wally Santana)

An Israeli-American man has been named by Taiwanese police as a suspect in the gruesome drug-related murder last week of a Canadian citizen found dismembered in a local park.

Oren Shlomo Mayer, 37, a tattoo artist, businessman and English teacher who was born in Israel and grew up in the United States, has been living and conducting business in Taiwan for several years and in July 2017 opened a tattoo parlor in Taipei.

He has also been claimed by local media to have been a drug dealer who was the “largest supplier of marijuana in northern Taiwan.”

Police said Mayer, who goes by the name “Oz,” fled to the Philippines after news broke of the murder of 43-year-old Canadian teacher Ramgahan Sanjay Ryan — also said to be a drug dealer — in the early morning hours of August 21.

According to Taiwan News, Ryan, who teaches English to local pre-school children, was walking his dog in the Zhongzheng Riverside Park when two men ambushed him with a chain and machetes, stabbed him to death, dismembered him and scattered his body parts. The dog fled to Ryan’s home, and the next day led two of Ryan’s friends to his body.

On Saturday police arrested US citizen Ewart Odane Bent, naming him as a suspect, Taiwan News reported. A Taiwanese accomplice was also arrested.

On Monday, they named Mayer as another suspect, saying that he had invited Bent to Taiwan to help with his drug business.

Police said that after the murder the pair “happily” bought beer at a nearby supermarket to celebrate.

Police said Bent had provided information about Mayer, who had taken a flight to Manila on August 25.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry told The Times of Israel it was looking into the case.

According to Mayer’s LinkedIn page, he studied at Bridges Academy high school in California before serving in the Israel Defense Forces in 1999-2001. He then lived and studied business in California, working in several office and sales jobs until in 2015 he began working as an English teacher in Taiwan, where he studied at a local university.

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