From ANDREW DRUMMOND, Singapore, Monday

SUSPECTED British serial killer John Martin Scripps, 35, is believed

to have used an electric stun gun to immobilise a South African brewery

engineer and his other victims before killing them and chopping up their

bodies, it was revealed today.

As Scripps, who stood impassively in a Singapore court as he was

remanded in custody, details of how he stalked his victims began to


At the city's police headquarters boxes of exhibits -- items found on

Scripps when he was arrested last month -- had already been labelled in

preparation for the trial ahead.

The exhibits include 10 pairs of handcuffs, a pair of thumbscrew

handcuffs, and a stun gun.

Police believe that Scripps stunned his victims and then probably

suffocated them before cutting up their bodies. In all cases he had

stolen the victims' cash and had attempted to obtain money from their

credit cards and bank accounts.

Outside the court, there was a scuffle with photographers as Scripps'

uncle, Mr Colin White from the Isle of Wight, shielded the accused's

mother Jean, 57.

Scripps was led into court with a group of 18 other local prisoners.

His hair cropped short and wearing a white T-shirt, he approached the

front of the dock as the name, John Martin, under which he has been

charged, was read out.

He said nothing, and did not even glance at his mother, a slim woman

with greying hair sitting at the back of the court.

Police asked that he be remanded into their custody at the Criminal

Investigation Division headquarters instead of Changi Prison's

psychiatric wing where he had been undergoing medical tests. They have

many more questions for the man who faces the mandatory death sentence.

His lawyer, Mr Edmond Pereira, approached the court with a plea for

Mrs Scripps to be able to see her son, who is accused of murdering

Johannesburg businessman Gerard Lowe in Singapore, Canadians Mrs Sheila

Damude, 49, and her son Daren, 21, on the Thai holiday island of Phuket,

and is linked to the disappearance in Mexico of 28-year-old Timothy

McDowall, a financial consultant from south London.

South African chemical engineer Gerard Lowe, 31, checked into the

River View Hotel in Singapore with Scripps on March 8. They shared a

twin room but just why is still unknown.

Lowe's carved-up body was found a week later in separate black plastic

bags floating off Cliffords Pier in Singapore harbour two miles away.

Scripps left Singapore for Thailand on March 11. On March 15, he

checked into Nillies Marine Hotel in Phuket, Thailand, arriving on the

same flight from Bangkok as Mrs Damude and her son.

The couple's bodies were later found chopped up and scattered in

undergrowth at the resort of Patong Beach. As in the case of Lowe,

Scripps had also told hotel staff that his victims had checked out of

the hotel early. He asked to move into their room.

But unlike the case of Lowe, there was evidence of blood in the hotel

room, suggesting there may have been a struggle.

Police believe that Scripps probably knocked on the door and used the

stun gun on his first victim before the second victim returned.

Meanwhile, Mexican police say Scripps had also managed to milk the

bank account of Mr McDowall of #20,000 and transfer the funds to the

Wells Fargo Bank in San Diego, California, earlier this year. Mr

McDowall has disappeared without trace.

The investigation into Scripps has involved Scotland Yard and the

police forces of six other countries -- Thailand, Singapore, Mexico,

South Africa, the United States and Canada.

Canadian interests were represented at the Singapore court by Douglas

Herda, a RCMP liason officer at the Canadian embassy in Singapore.

''Because of the background of these murders and the status of Mrs

Damude, these killings have attracted a high profile in Canada. Scripps

had nothing in common with Mrs Damude. Their backgrounds were quite

opposite,'' he said.

''It appears that Scripps was selecting victims though, of course, we

do not know what story he was telling them. We are sure he did not

become friends of the Damudes.''

Mrs Damude, financial manager of the Pacific Christian School in

Victoria, Vancouver Island, was once the secretary to British Columbia

former finance minister Hugh Curtis.

British Consul Colin Lane, who escorted Mrs Scripps to court,

confirmed that he had spoken to her son. ''I cannot comment on what he

said. That is a consular matter. But he appeared calm and composed. His

mother is anxious to avoid publicity.''

The family were represented by Mr Michael Quigley, of the Manchester

firm of solictors Endlar Quigley. He said: ''The family still have a

very vague idea of what has happened. All they know about John is what

they have read in the newspapers.

''The mother's first thought was to come out and see her son. She does

not wish to make any statement to the press.''

The alarm was raised after Lowe's wife Vanessa, 33, contacted police

in Johannesburg, distraught at the fact that her husband had failed to

return on his booked flight to Jan Smuts International airport. She was

already concerned, not having had a phone call for several days.

She described Lowe as the perfect husband who had never ceased to

surprise her with presents of perfume and candlelight dinners since they

married two years ago.

''I cannot understand to this day how he ended up in the same room as

Scripps,'' Mrs Lowe told a South African magazine.

''Gerard was not stupid but he did have a soft heart. The only thing I

can think of is that Scripps pretended to be without money and asked

Gerard to help him out.''