Ta Mok, real name Chhit Choeun, had a reputation as a fierce and brutal leader formed by the purges he implemented on behalf of Pol Pot. After their ousting from power in 1979, he established a guerrilla stronghold in Anlong Veng, as well as logistical bases in Sisaket province in Thailand with the help of the Thai military. For many years he occupied a mansion in the Thai town of Khukan and operated a lucrative trade in smuggling logs from Cambodia. Later he became a partner in at least three Thai petrol stations. In 1997 he split from Pol Pot, whom he put on trial, though he was forced to flee across the Thai border a year later, before the Thai military finally gave up their support for him and he was captured. Ta Mok is known to be directly responsible for many deaths, the most high profile was that of British de-miner Christopher Howes in 1996. Howes worked for the Mines Advisory Group and was kidnapped and executed in Anlong Veng on the orders of Ta Mok by men under his command. Ta Mok's untimely death has cheated the Cambodian people of justice against one of the most feared Khmer Rouge leaders, though he was defiant to the last that he had done no wrong. History will record otherwise.