By Lester Hio
THIS sleek silver Porsche Cayman-S was a head-turner in more ways than one yesterday.
Scrawled on its rear were the words "O$P$" - loan sharks' shorthand for"owe money, pay money".
The culprit had also written a name, address and handphone numberwith a red marker.
The two-seater Porsche Cayman-S, which bore diplomatic plates, was parked at a reserved lot at the United Square carpark.
The car is registered to the Italian embassy, whose office is there. When contacted, it declined to comment, citing ongoing police investigations.
When The New Paper arrived yesterday, police officers were there conducting their investigations. One of themwas seen taking photos of the vandalised car.
A police spokesman said they received a call about the vandalism of the car at 9.25am and are investigating the incident.
The New Paper understands that the vandalism was discovered by the driver of the car after he had parked at the United Square carpark.
It is believed that the vandalism occurred at the residence of an embassy staff member.
A man who works in the building said he had seen the car arriving at United Square, which is in the Novena area, around 9am yesterday. The graffiti was already on it.
The reserved parking lots there are monitored by security cameras and patrolled by security guards.
A few curious onlookers gathered around the car when they noticed the words on its rear. They took up five linesand filled a large portion of the surface.
They even whipped out pen and paper to jot down the licence plate number.
One of them, who did not want to give his name, said: "I better buy 4-D first before the licence number comes out in the newspapers."
When we called the handphone number scrawled on the car, a man picked up.
He claimed that the debtor was involved in illegal football betting and had borrowed money from loan sharks. The man also said that the handphone number used to belong to the debtor.
He declined to speak further and hung up. Targeting neighbours
Previous media reports showed that loan sharks have taken to vandalising the cars of debtors' neighbours as a pressure tactic to make the debtor pay up.
The New Paper reported last April that two BMWs were vandalised by loan sharks who were chasing down a debtor who lived in a nearby unit.
The left sides of the BMWs were found defaced with "O$P$".
The following month, a Hyundai Tuscani was similarly vandalised, scrawled with the same address as that written on the BMWs.
This article was first published in The New Paper.