Shane Todd was a gifted engineer working for the Singaporean research agency Institute of Microelectronics. But in June 2012, he was found dead in his apartment. Police ruled the death a suicide, but Dr. Todd's family believed otherwise, lobbying the FBI and members of Congress into bringing attention to the case. Dr. Todd was working on a galium nitride amplifier, a powerful new technology with military and commercial applications potentially worth billions. His parents believe his work on this sensitive technology, possibly for a project with the Chinese telecom giant Huawei, may have led to his untimely death. On May 13, 2013, the Singapore government launched a 12-day public coroner's inquest to determine the cause of Dr. Todd's death.
Jul 8, 2013
An inquiry has found that Shane Todd, an American engineer who was found dead in his Singapore apartment just over a year ago, committed suicide. The ruling is in line with Police findings last year. Before his death, Todd was contracted by a Singaporean government research agency to work on a galium nitride amplifier, a new technology with commercial and potential military applications. Todd's family believed that his work made him a target for foul play, claiming a hard drive found in his apartment supports their theory and the suicide note, which praised his former employer, was out of character.Read Article >
In an extensive 150-page report, Singaporean authorities deem that "the available evidence was inconsistent with the possibility that there was foul play involved in the deceased's death." In regards to alleged bruises on Todd's hands that were thought to be signs of a struggle, the court ruled that these were in fact caused by postmortem lividity — blood settling under the skin after death. After laying out a timeline of the events leading to Todd's death, the document states "beyond reasonable doubt" that the 31-year-old engineer committed suicide.
May 17, 2013
After a week of court testimony, the tragic death of Shane Todd, 31, which sparked an international investigation, is now looking more like a suicide than an assassination. State witnesses presented a picture of a deeply depressed young man, while offering viable explanations for some of the inconsistencies that originally aroused suspicion around the case. Forensic experts also recreated the death scene, showing it was consistent with hanging and not forceful garroting.Read Article >
Four of Dr. Todd’s former colleagues testified today saying the project he was working on was not sensitive military technology, as speculated by experts who reviewed files on Dr. Todd’s computer. The high-powered amplifier he was working on was for commercial applications, colleagues said. "IME does not conduct classified military research," said Dr. Patrick Lo Guo-Qiang, an American citizen and Dr. Todd’s former superior at IME. "What they want you to do is nothing secret, they want to be published."
May 13, 2013
Investigators and friends testified today that Shane Todd, the American engineer who was found hanging in his bathroom in Singapore last year, was depressed and even visited suicide-related websites in the months before his death.Read Article >
The case even attracted attention from the FBI, two senators, a congressman, and the secretary of state. If true, the Todds' accusation means that the friendly Asian trade ally is acting as a proxy for China, which could have significant implications for relations between the US and Singapore.
Apr 11, 2013
"Mom, I’m going to call you every week," 31-year-old Shane Todd reportedly told his mother before he was found dead last June in an alleged suicide in Singapore. "If you don’t hear from me for a week, call the American embassy."Read Article >
It's possible Todd hanged himself, as the Singaporean police ruled when his body was found, but his family doesn't buy it. They suspect he was murdered over his work on a military-grade technology that was potentially worth billions.
Mar 26, 2013
After intense lobbying by a US Senator, the Secretary of State, and the US Attorney General, Singapore will conduct an official coroner's inquiry into the unexpected death of American engineer Shane Todd, starting on May 13.Read Article >
Todd told friends and family that he was working on a joint project for his employer, a Singaporean government research agency, and the partially state-owned Chinese company Huawei. There is some evidence that the project had military implications, and Todd had told his family he was worried that his work could get him "in trouble with the US government." The agency and Huawei say the project never went beyond exploratory talks.
Feb 15, 2013Read Article >
Shane Todd's girlfriend found him hanging in his Singaporean apartment six months ago, a sudden tragedy that local police deemed a suicide. But six months later, Todd's girlfriend, family and the FBI are still wondering what exactly happened. Todd had just put in his last day as an employee of IME, a Singaporean government research institute, where he had been working on a high-powered amplifier with commercial and "huge" military uses. The amplifier was being co-developed with the Chinese telecom giant Huawei. Todd's parents say their son was increasingly uncomfortable at his job and "said there were things he had done that could get him in trouble with the US government." The Singaporean investigation is still ongoing. But after analyzing Todd's backup hard drive and commissioning a review of the autopsy report, Todd's family now believes he was murdered. Suspicious clues include suicide notes that praised the employer he allegedly hated, bruises on his hands, and evidence that his hard drive had been accessed after his death. There's nothing conclusive in the Financial Times's deep investigation, but it's a strange story that raises some very scary questions.