RCMP Investigate 2001 Disappearance Of Man ‘Caught In Crossfire’


Narinder “Ned” Mander

METRO VANCOUVER — The RCMP have released details about the mysterious disappearance eight years ago of Narinder “Ned” Mander, a Richmond man police believe was kidnapped and forced to lure his friend and another man to a meeting at a Surrey Sikh temple where gunmen were waiting.


Dozens of shots from multiple firearms resulted in Rick Bhatti, 26, being killed at the temple when his car was riddled with bullets on Oct. 9, 2001.


RCMP E Division spokesman Sgt. Tim Shields said Thursday police believe Mander was murdered shortly after the shooting. His body was never found.


Shields appealed to anyone who knows the whereabouts of Mander’s remains to help his family recover them.


“For eight years, Ned’s family has suffered tremendously. Without knowing the whereabouts of Ned’s remains, they have been unable to find closure and move on with their lives,” said Shields.


Shortly after Mander disappeared, his family posted a $50,000 reward for information leading to his whereabouts. Shields said that reward still stands and would be paid for the recovery of his remains.


While the ambush had all the hallmarks of a gangland slaying, Mander was not involved in any criminal activity and was an innocent victim “caught in the crossfire of a bitter rivalry,” said Shields.


He was last seen leaving his Surrey granite and marble business with two Asian men in a red Dodge minivan at 2:45 p.m.


“We believe he was lured into the vehicle where they kidnapped him. The purpose was to force him to phone a friend who was in a car with Bhatti in order to lure them to a Sikh temple on 85 Avenue and 128 Street. When Bhatti arrived at the meeting place, his car was riddled with bullets.


“He died at the scene, but the friend escaped unharmed,” said Shields.


Shields said Mander made 15 calls to his friend on his cellphone that evening and cellphone site records show he was being transported to numerous locations throughout Surrey prior to Bhatti’s murder.


Witnesses to the murder saw a red Dodge Caravan fleeing the scene and followed it, but gunfire from the Caravan disabled their vehicle near 82 Avenue and 128 Street.


“It was sometime later that evening when we believe Ned was murdered,” he said.

A red Dodge Caravan fleeing from the scene of a 2001 Surrey murder that may be linked to the disappearance of Narinder “Ned” Mander.


Investigators are also seeking a blue 1996 Plymouth Grand Voyager stolen the day before the kidnapping in Vancouver, which they believe was also used in the incidents.


“This case is still active and ongoing. We have credible information that there is someone out there who knows the location of Ned’s remains,” said Shields.