The money changer would often do his transactions in the staircase at The Arcade in Raffles Place.
And it is believed he felt that the location was better suited and safer than the small money changer shops outside.
Tragically, the "safe" place turned out to be the most dangerous place for Mr Suhardi Tan, a money changer from Batam, Friday.
In what is believed to be an attempted robbery, Mr Tan, 26, a Chinese Indonesian, was allegedly stabbed to death at the second- floor staircase in the Collyer Quay building.
The owner of a mobile phone shop, who wanted to be known only as Sam, 37, said he would often see Mr Tan going into the staircase to do his money transactions.
Sam's friend, Mr James Chan, 30, an English tutor, told The New Paper last night: "Sam has been here for 11 years, and he always sees him there.
"He probably thinks it's a safer place for them to exchange their money."
It is not known how much money- if any - was missing when Mr Tan's bloodied body, which had multiple stab wounds, was found.
Money changers told The New Paper that Mr Tan and his brother were regular suppliers at The Arcade.
Mr Mohd Ali, a money changer at The Arcade, said Mr Tan, who ran a business in Batam, would often change amounts ranging from S$20,000 to S$100,000.
Mr Chan said he was out with Sam yesterday afternoon when the latter received a phone call from one of his employees.
She told him that a dead body had been found at the staircase beside his shop and that the place was swarming with police.
The employee said they had to close the mobile phone shop.
The duo rushed down to the scene and was stunned to find the area cordoned off. Sam was allowed in to identify the body.
He came out, pale-faced and aghast.
"He told me that a man was lying in a huge pool of blood," said Mr Chan. "It looked like he had been stabbed many times in the chest."
When contacted, a police spokesman said they received a call for assistance at about 4.30pm at 11 Collyer Quay.
When officers arrived, they found an Indonesian man lying motionless inside the building.
It is understood that there were multiple stab wounds to his body. He was pronounced dead at about 5pm, and police are investigating the unnatural death.
At the scene last night, several men and women, believed to be Mr Tan's family, broke down.
A few tried to rush into the cordoned off area but were prevented from doing so.
Said one of his cousins, Mr Dedy Tan, 32:
"Some of us took a ferry from Batam here when we heard the news. I can't believe this, I never thought this would happen in Singapore."
He declined to comment further.
Mr Mohd Ali said he was shocked to hear what had happened.
He said: "I just saw him at my shop last week. We want to know who did this, so we can we prevent such things from happening again."
He added that the Batam company Mr Tan was from is a family business.
He said: "We've been working with their company for at least 10 years, and they usually change very big amounts.
"They would come with their bags full of rupiahs and supply them to every shop."
Dressed in T-shirts and jeans, the suppliers would roll their dark-coloured trolley bags from shop to shop.
Said Mr Mohd Ali: "They are good people who come here only to do business."
He noted that the brothers would always come together or with several others.
He said: "They come almost every day, either in the morning and afternoon.
"They don't talk much but they would always say hello."
Another person who knew Mr Tan was Madam Maria Ismail, 66, who works for a money changer on the first storey.
She said: "He was a fair, young man, who was nice and humble.
"They've been supplying our shop for about four years now and nothing has ever happened."
She added that the staircase was a very dangerous area as it was enclosed with large, metal doors.
She said: "Even if he was struggling with the attacker inside, no one would be able to hear him scream." (Source : AsiaOne)
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