Thrash metal and the chronicling of human depravity are not exactly strangers, and they don't come any more depraved than the subjects of this song. Former US Marines Leonard Lake and Charles Ng met through a magazine advertisement. Lake was a native of California; Ng was born in Hong Kong, and in spite of his privileged upbringing was the proverbial rotten apple, having been expelled from boarding school in England and enlisting in the Marine Corps under false pretenses. In June 1985, kleptomaniac Ng was caught shoplifting; this led to the arrest of Lake, who in trying to come to his partner's rescue was found to be in possession of stolen ID. Before the police could question him properly, Lake swallowed a concealed cyanide capsule. A search of his isolated home led to the uncovering of a veritable house of horrors.
Ng was arrested shortly after in Canada, for shoplifting again, and spent the next six years fighting extradition. When finally he came to trial, Lake's wife Cricket - who had been granted immunity - testified against him. In 1999, Ng was convicted of 11 murders, and sentenced to death. The two men were believed on credible evidence to have murdered up to 25 people, including two entire families. A video of them torturing one of their victims psychologically was released and uploaded to YouTube. Some of the horror of the case can be gleaned from the lyrics (if you can understand them) by vocalist Rob Dukes; the music was supplied by guitarist Lee Altus. "The Ballad Of Leonard And Charles" runs to 7 minutes 14 seconds and is the first track on the album Exhibit B: The Human Condition
Alexander Baron - London, England