Bruce McArthur (Pic: Facebook)
Alleged Canadian gay village serial killer Bruce McArthur has been charged with the murder of a seventh man as police investigate 15 other cases.
Toronto Police say they believe that McArthur killed Abdulbasir Faizi, a married Afghan immigrant who was 42-years-old when he disappeared on 29 December, 2010.
When he vanished, his family discovered that he’d been using gay dating apps and had frequented gay bathouses.
Faizi’s wife went on to divorce him, believing that he had abandoned her and their two daughters. It now appears that he was murdered.
McArthur was arrested on January 18 and charged with six counts of First-Degree Murder in relation to the deaths of Selim Esen, Andrew Kinsman, Soroush Mahmaudi, Dean Lisowick, Majeed Kayhan and Skanda Navaratnam.
The murders follow a string of disappearances of men in Toronto’s gay village area over a number of years.
It’s believed that McArthur, a 66-year-old landscaper, disposed of the remains of his victims in pots and planters and possibly in gardens in which he worked.
On Wednesday, Homicide Detective Sergeant Hank Idsinga addressed the media at a press conference at police headquarters.
“One of the focuses of the investigation has been human remains found in planters at Mallory Crescent,” said Idsinga. “These remains are of individuals who have been dismembered. They are in various stages of decomposition and doctors from the Ontario Forensic Pathology Service have been doing some very difficult and time-consuming work attempting to reconstruct the remains and identify them.”
Abdulbasir Faizi (Pic: Toronto Police)
Idsinga said the remains of at least eight individuals have been located within the planters. The eighth person remains unidentified but police have released a sketch of the possible victim.
It was also revealed that investigators are currently reviewing 15 cold cases from 1975 to 1997 that could be linked to McArthur.
“This number is fluid and may increase or decrease,” said Idsinga. “As a result of tips and help from the public, we hope to begin searching some properties associated to Mr. McArthur with our canine unit. As of today, our list has grown from 30 properties to 75.”
Police are facing an investigation for over the years rejecting the idea that a serial killer targeting gay men was on the prowl in Toronto. They have also been accused of racism by not being more active in the investigation because most victims were of South Asian and Middle Eastern origin.