The Shay Rebellion | Christopher Shay

Top 10 Stolen Body Parts

This Top 10 Stolen Body Parts list went viral with some 2.4 million views in a single day.

‘Gigolos’ on the Beach: Cracking Down on Bali’s Kuta Cowboys

by Christopher Shay

Muscular, bronzed Indonesian men with big smiles and long, wavy hair have been seducing foreign women along the white-sand beaches of Bali for more than three decades now. Known as “Kuta cowboys,” after Bali’s popular Kuta Beach, these men often hold low-paying beach jobs renting snorkeling gear or selling sodas, but what they are really peddling is romance. Many call them gigolos — a term they reject — but for years, they’ve been flirting with foreigners without causing a fuss. That is, until now. Local police raided the beach on April 26 after the trailer for a new documentary on the Kuta cowboys went viral on the Internet. Indonesian authorities detained 28 men — described by the head of Kuta’s beach security as “young, fit-looking and tanned” — on suspicion of selling sex. Could this be the beginning of the end for Bali’s famed Kuta cowboys? Read the rest of this entry »

Thailand’s Blue Diamond Heist: Still a Sore Point

by Christopher Shay

Two decades ago, a Thai gardener climbed into the palace of a Saudi prince through a second-story window, busted open a safe with a screwdriver and stole some 200 pounds of jewelry. The former Saudi chargé d’affaires in Bangkok told the Washington Post that the gardener stuffed “rubies the size of chicken eggs” in his vacuum-cleaner bag, along with a huge, nearly flawless blue diamond, which at 50 carats would be one of the largest blue diamonds in the world. Read the rest of this entry »

Macau at 10: Can Asia’s Gambling Industry Continue to Thrive?

by Christopher Shay

When Edmund Ho, Macau’s first chief executive, assumed office on December 20, 1999, the former Portuguese colony near Hong Kong was a very different place. Hong Kong business mogul Stanley Ho had a monopoly on the region’s sleepy gambling industry. The Triads, southern China’s organized crime conglomerates, killed openly in the streets, and the economy was shrinking fast. Read the rest of this entry »

U.S. Crime Writer Tackles a Real Hong Kong Cold Case

by Christopher Shay

Ani Ashekian, a 31-year-old Canadian tourist, arrived in Hong Kong on Nov. 9, 2008, traveling solo. After spending the night at a guesthouse in Chungking Mansions, a famously shabby tenement building, she text-messaged her niece to wish her a happy birthday and withdrew money from an ATM across the harbor. After that, Ashekian vanished. Read the rest of this entry »