Five hitmen have been jailed for attempted murder after they all attempted to avoid making a profit on the killing by paying someone else cheaply.
According to BBC News Asia, the trouble began back in 2013 when real estate developer Wei Mou decided to sue his competitor Tan Youhui. Youhui was concerned that he would be unable to pay the legal fees and damages when the case began to look dicey, and so he offered 2 million yuan ($280,000) to an assassin to murder Mou.
However, the hitman Youhui hired wanted to keep a substantial portion of the profit, but minimize the risk of being apprehended himself. So he then offered the hit to another hitman for half the original price.
But it seems as though the second hitman had the exact same idea, and he then subcontracted the job to another hitman at half price. The third hitman subcontracted to a fourth and even cheaper assassin, who had the same idea as all the others, and gave the job to a fifth for an even lower cut.
It was then that the criminal conspiracy hit a snag. The fifth hitman was apparently so angry about how little money he was getting that attempted to threaten the target to fake his own death.
This then led to the police discovering the Fargo-esque plot. As a result, the businessman and would-be-killers have all been convicted of attempted murder in a court in Nanning, Guangxi, following a three-year-long trial that left many jurors baffled.
Tan was sentenced to five years in prison, while Xi, the first hitman, was sentenced to three years and six months. Meanwhile, the second and third hitmen, Yang Kangsheng and Yang Guangsheng were sentenced to three years and three months. Finally, the last two, Mo and Ling, were jailed for three years and two years and seven months respectively.