Shelly de Killer
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Miles Edgeworth
A special investigation team has existed for a number of years, but few know of it. [...] Their task is to find the "owner" of this card... A man called Shelly de Killer. And just as his name states, he is a "killer", an assassin. The best, at that.

Shelly de Killer is the third heir to a line of assassins known as "de Killer" that first became known in the early 20th century. de Killer performs his jobs calmly and with precision, and always leaves behind his calling card -- a white card with a pink seashell design on it -- so that the authorities know of his involvement, thereby preventing his clients from becoming suspects.

Two of de Killer's targets are known: Jammin' Ninja actor Juan Corrida and Zheng Fa president Teikun Ō's body double (although de Killer was tricked into believing that he was the real Ō). De Killer was called to testify as a witness via a radio transceiver at Corrida's murder trial and was questioned in person (whilst under the guise of an ice cream salesman) during the investigation into Gai Tojiro's murder.

Involvement in Corrida's murder

Main article: Farewell, My Turnabout


In March of 2018, the actor Matt Engarde hired de Killer to kill rival actor Juan Corrida during the Hero of Heroes Grand Prix event at the Gatewater Imperial Hotel on the 20th of that month and retrieve Celeste Inpax's suicide note, which was hidden in a Swiss bear toy. After the Hero of Heroes Grand Prix was over, Engarde met up with de Killer, who disguised himself as a bellboy, and paid him as per their contract. De Killer soon afterwards went to Corrida's hotel room and killed the actor by strangling him with his own scarf. The assassin then left his calling card, and gave Engarde the bear.

Adrian Andrews, Engarde's manager, was the first to discover the crime scene. She accidentally took de Killer's calling card and meddled with the crime scene to frame Engarde for the murder. The resulting arrest was the first time that one of de Killer's clients had been arrested for one of his hits. His personal code meant that he would do all he could to free his client, and so delivered the bear toy to Engarde Mansion and collected a videotape from the private lounge, which Engarde had told him to retrieve, but not watch.

Bellboy de Killer 1

Disguised as a bellboy.

Still under the guise of a bellboy, de Killer lured Maya Fey by alerting her of a phone call at the front desk. De Killer then gave Will Powers a transceiver to give to the defense attorney Phoenix Wright for two-way communication, and subsequently demanded a complete acquittal for Engarde in one trial day, holding Fey as ransom. He kept Fey locked up in Engarde Mansion's wine cellar and informed her of his profession and the deal that he had just made with Wright.

Shortly before the trial, de Killer shot the case's prosecutor, Franziska von Karma, in the shoulder, as a "present" to Wright. As von Karma was sent to the Hotti Clinic, Miles Edgeworth prosecuted in her stead. Although Wright tried to make the case for Adrian Andrews being the real killer, he failed to do so, and the trial was adjourned for the day. Before Andrews left, however, Edgeworth discovered the card that she had absentmindedly found, and demanded that Andrews give it to him.


Mugshot of "John Doe" the "butler".

After the trial, Wright went to visit von Karma, and Edgeworth told him about de Killer. During Wright's investigation, Fey tried to escape with de Killer's calling card, and she found a picture of Celeste Inpax in a private lounge before de Killer caught her. When Engarde asked Wright to feed his cat Shoe at his mansion, Wright met de Killer again, albeit in the guise of "John Doe", Engarde's butler. Wright tried to gain information out of Doe, but the "butler" insisted that it would be inappropriate for him to talk about it.

While Wright was in Corrida's hotel room, de Killer contacted Wright about the "deal" that they had made. He reluctantly agreed to let Wright try again tomorrow, but communication between them suddenly broke off into static. The cause was eventually discovered: a hidden spy camera in one of Corrida's bear presents, which was traced back to Engarde. Wright confronted Engarde about this, and Engarde revealed his true persona and that he had videotaped Corrida's murder as "insurance" against de Killer, as well as a possible way to blackmail him.

Edgeworth was waiting for Wright as he left the detention center, and they went to the Criminal Affairs Department to discuss Wright's situation. During the conversation, de Killer contacted Wright again, and when Wright asked why de Killer would do so much for Engarde, the assassin replied that he saw it as part of his duty to protect his clients. He then remarked that it would be quite troublesome for someone to trace the signal and ended the call. Unfortunately for him, he had his location given away by a "meow" from Shoe at the end of the call. Edgeworth immediately sent police units to Engarde Mansion, but the assassin had already escaped. Wright then realized that he had previously talked to de Killer face-to-face as the butler "John Doe".

On the second day of Engarde's trial, Wright stalled for time by picking at the testimonies of Powers and Andrews while Gumshoe and a police squad tried to find de Killer. As the police closed in on de Killer, he managed to escape, but he left his pistol, the videotape, his bellboy's uniform, and one of his calling cards. He attempted to retrieve the tape, injuring three officers in the process, but he failed to do so. Gumshoe took these items de Killer had dropped and sped toward the District Court.

Killer Radio

De Killer's radio transceiver.

De Killer then contacted Edgeworth out of court seeking to testify, telling Edgeworth that his client was indeed Matt Engarde. The radio transceiver was brought to the witness stand, but de Killer betrayed Edgeworth and named Andrews as his client. However, Wright exposed contradictory details in the assassin's claims about his supposed client, which caused de Killer to realize what the attorney was doing and cut communications. Just as the judge was about to render a not guilty verdict, von Karma appeared with the evidence that Gumshoe had taken. Wright quickly contacted de Killer again and told him about the videotape. Realizing that de Killer was oblivious to the contents or purpose of the tape, Wright informed him of what Engarde had done. Furious at this betrayal, de Killer broke his contract with Engarde and informed the court that, if a client willingly betrayed him, de Killer would swear bloody vengeance upon them. He then informed Wright that, since the contract was broken, he would return Fey to him. Once Engarde realized that to do otherwise would leave him at the mercy of the furious assassin, the actor pleaded guilty for his crimes.

After the trial, de Killer contacted Wright one more time via the transceiver. He said that the attention the case was getting was making it difficult for him to operate and that he planned to leave the country. He also told Wright to visit his website if he was ever in need of his services, before the transceiver self-destructed, leaving nothing to trace back to him.

A curious client

This article contains information about Ace Attorney media that has been released only in Japan.

The information in this article comes from a game, demo, or other media that has been released in Japan, but not in any predominantly English-speaking country. The subject of this article has not been officially revealed for English versions of this media. English versions of this content are only available through unofficial translations. More information on this can be found here.

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Presidential assassination attempts

Main article: Turnabout Target
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A year later, Sōta Sarushiro hired de Killer to assassinate President Teikun Ō of Zheng Fa. The assassin first tried to infiltrate the president's bodyguards by disguising himself as one. He managed to gather a good amount of information on the president's protection, including the names of the leader and sub-leader of the guards, and soon struck. Although the leader of the bodyguards, a man called Gai Tojiro, noticed de Killer, by that time the assassin had managed to get close to his target. The assassin managed to easily overpower most of the bodyguards, beginning with the sub-leader Manosuke Naitō, whom he grabbed by the throat so hard that the latter was later forced to wear a neck brace and was unable to turn his head right. Unfortunately for de Killer, Gai Tojiro proved far more formidable, as he quickly grabbed, twisted and shot the assassin's left arm. De Killer managed to escape with his wounded arm and gained respect for Tojiro's skill.

The president's security was subsequently changed so that only Tojiro and Naitō would be on the stage with the president during a speech at Gourd Lake in the United States, which was taking place two days after de Killer's attack. De Killer learned of the speech, as well as a planned staged assassination attempt the president had planned in an attempt to boost his flagging ratings back home in Zheng Fa. The assassin bandaged his wounded arm, and hid a knife inside the dressing. He then acquired a red raincoat with a hood, as that would be what the fake assassin would be wearing. Infiltrating the site posing as ice cream salesman "John Doe", de Killer waited for an opportunity to turn the staged assassination into a real one.


As the president gave his speech, de Killer saw the other hooded figure aiming a laser sight at the president's forehead. Gunshots soon rang out and the crowd panicked. De Killer moved with the crowd, but made sure to remove his raincoat and hide it in a nearby stall so that he would not be suspected. Miles Edgeworth was subsequently called to investigate this apparent assassination attempt, and de Killer watched him with interest. Edgeworth eventually learned of the red-hooded figure suspected of being the president's assassin, and then found de Killer's raincoat. Since his wound would occasionally still open and bleed, a bloodstain was found inside the discarded raincoat on the left-hand side. Edgeworth used this to find de Killer in the crowd.


Mugshot of "John Doe" the "ice cream salesman".

De Killer tried to feign ignorance, but he slipped up by referring to Gai Tojiro by his full name, information he should not have known. Nonetheless, the assassin testified about his sighting of another red-hooded figure, whom turned out to be an aspiring journalist named Mikiko Hayami. Just then, Manosuke Naitō appeared to announce that the president was okay, but that Gai Tojiro had been killed. The bodyguard also told Edgeworth that the Zheng Fa police would take over the investigation. Just as Naitō made to take away Hayami, de Killer grabbed the former and held his hidden knife to the bodyguard's throat. He revealed who he really was and demanded that Edgeworth be allowed to continue his investigation. Naitō had no choice but to submit to the assassin, and so Edgeworth, Kay Faraday, Hayami, Naitō, and de Killer boarded the nearby seaplane on which the president had arrived.


Once on board the plane, de Killer found that his target was hiding inside a secure room. He attempted to make Teikun Ō come out by threatening to kill Naitō. When it became apparent that the president would not appear, de Killer, satisfied with the progress of Edgeworth's investigation, proceeded to escape by turning out the lights and knocking out all those present. Just before Edgeworth passed out, de Killer informed the prosecutor that he had not killed Gai Tojiro, and left his trademark calling card. De Killer then took an inflatable boat and escaped to the other side of Gourd Lake, which was devoid of a police presence.

Edgeworth eventually discovered the whole fake assassination plot, as well as the fact that Naitō had been the one who had killed Tojiro. However, the calling card de Killer left behind remained an unsolved mystery to Edgeworth, with the card leaving him wondering who de Killer's client was.


Main article: The Grand Turnabout

In the days that followed, de Killer became suspicious over the president's seeming willingness to allow Naitō to be killed in his place, finding it inconsistent with his known character. De Killer eventually found out that his client had lied to him about his target; the man he had tried to kill was not the president at all but a body double. Sarushiro had known this from the very start, having witnessed the real president's death, yet failed to communicate this information. This broke de Killer's rules for an assassin-client trust relationship, and so he once again decided to end his contract and go after his client. On April 3, de Killer visited the prison cell of fellow assassin Ryōken Hōinbō, knowing that Hōinbō knew Sarushiro, but Hōinbō had escaped from prison.

De Killer saw Sarushiro's role in manipulating another of Edgeworth's cases the following day, and observed the prosecutor in the guise of a cotton candy salesman at the top of the Big Tower. After Edgeworth resolved the case, de Killer contacted him through a transceiver and informed him of the existence of a mastermind behind the case. Edgeworth had already figured out that someone else was pulling the strings in the case, but he had given up his prosecutor's badge in the course of his investigation, and de Killer wondered what Edgeworth would do without it. The body double was later discovered dead, causing Edgeworth to investigate the murder. Whilst Edgeworth was investigating the tower roof, de Killer made himself known and provided information on his client, the mastermind Edgeworth was looking for, without giving away the client's identity, as that would violate a non-disclosure guarantee that he held with his other clients.

DeKiller vs Ryouken

The two assassins.

Edgeworth eventually found that Sarushiro was the mastermind and the body double's killer, and confronted him at the Berry Big Circus. After Edgeworth revealed Sarushiro's role in recent events, de Killer suddenly appeared, now free to attack his client without violating his non-disclosure guarantee. Holding his former client at knifepoint, de Killer told Sarushiro that he knew that he had lied about the double's identity and had caused de Killer's own assassination attempts to fail, and moved to kill him. However, before he could do any harm, Hōinbō suddenly appeared. The encounter resulted in a draw, with each holding his weapon to the other's throat. Hōinbō requested that de Killer spare Sarushiro's life and instead let him serve a prison sentence. Realizing that Hōinbō was serious about this request, de Killer backed off and made his escape, with the Interpol agent Shi-Long Lang in close pursuit.

De Killer managed to evade the Interpol agent and returned to Gourd Lake. As the wound in his arm reopened, he remarked that he would never forget the man who had given it to him. Pondering whether he should continue to sell ice cream or crepes, he remarked that he wished to live the calm life of a salesman, until his services were required again.


Shelly de Killer
...People are not always who they appear to be.

Shelly de Killer's unique calling card.

Shelly de Killer is a polite and calm individual who never directly shows his emotions. He holds a strictly professional view of his work and carries it out with precision, but also strongly values the bond of trust that he has with his clients, such that he always meets with them face-to-face, and considers betrayal a horrible crime deserving death. Whenever he commits a contract for a client, de Killer leaves a calling card with a seashell design on it at the crime scene. The card confirms that he had committed the murder, and thus serves as insurance against any charges the client may face. De Killer also has his own website for assassination inquiries.

Although de Killer has pretended to be a bellboy, a butler, a bodyguard, an ice cream salesman, and a cotton candy salesman for his known jobs, these roles are little more than a change of clothing, as he doesn't change his appearance or personality.

De Killer and fellow assassin Ryōken Hōinbō appear to have encountered each other at some point in the past.


  • His Japanese surname "Koroshiya" literally means "assassin".
  • "Sazaemon", his Japanese given name, comes from the Japanese word "sazae", which means "a seashell". This is a reference to his calling card.
  • His Japanese alias, "Tarou Tanaka" (田中太郎), is a generic, plain name in Japanese. The English equivalent would roughly be "John Smith" or "John Doe".
  • "Shelly" references his calling card, a card with a picture of a conch shell.
  • "De Killer" is a reference to his occupation.
  • Although unintentional, his full name "Shelly de Killer" is effectively "the killer with the conches".
  • His alias "John Doe" is used when a subject's true identity is unknown or withheld for legal reasons. It is also used for a male corpse or hospital patient if their identity is unknown.
  • His French alias comes from "allons au bistro" which means "let's go to the pub".


  • The radio transceiver used by de Killer to testify in Farewell, My Turnabout bears a resemblance to the assassin himself. The line down the middle of the transceiver resembles de Killer's stitches and the dial resembles his monocle. This similarity is bolstered by the fact that the groove on the dial looks a lot like his constantly closed eyes and that it rotates according to his emotions.
  • In Gyakuten Kenji 2, the ice-cream cone de Killer is seen holding bears a resemblance to de Killer himself, echoing the resemblance to his own transceiver in the assassin's previous appearance. In the ice-cream's case, it has a cherry "monocle" and the ice-cream itself is split into two flavors up the center, mirroring de Killer's distinctive facial stitches. The ice cream, like the transceiver, shows de Killer's emotions.
  • Despite the police being aware that it is associated with him, de Killer's signature shell design is clearly visible on his "ice cream salesman" clothing. However, even Miles Edgeworth did not seem to recognize it during their face-to-face encounter, which is odd considering that he was able to instantly recognize the design on one of the assassin's calling cards in Farewell, My Turnabout.
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