'Serial killer:' words now used in massive police investigation

Aaron Brown
February 1, 2018

Toronto police have charged 66-year-old landscaper Bruce McArthur with five counts of first-degree murder, calling him an alleged serial killer.

McArthur now stands accused of a total of five first-degree murder charges, and he is being investigated for what police believe may be many other missing persons cases in the Toronto area, dating back years, according to homicide Det.

McArthur has already been charged in the killings of Andrew Kinsman, 49, and Selim Esen, 42, two gay men who went missing past year near a downtown neighborhood known as the center of the city's LGBTQ community.

It's believed McArthur targeted gay men in the Toronto area and at least one person has come forward to explain a violent encounter with McArthur past year.

Toronto police said Monday they are hunting through backyard gardens and planters across the city for possible victims of a landscaper accused of killing at least five people and suspected of more slayings.

Police have identified more than 30 properties where McArthur worked and urged his past clients to come forward.

"We don't know how many more victims there are going to be, but it's more than the gay community", Idsinga said.

After announcing the identity of the two most recent victims, Detective Sergeant Hank Idsinga told reporters that they "don't quite fit the profile of the earlier victims" and that the investigation now "encompasses more than the gay community, it encompasses the city of Toronto".

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While Liddle said McArthur sometimes had a younger man helping him with the gardening work, police said they had no evidence anyone else was involved in any of the alleged crimes. There are also plans to excavate a further two sites. Idsinga said while he does not know exactly how many victims will ultimately be identified in the case, he expects the number will rise.

Toronto police may have saved the life of a man who was in Bruce McArthur's apartment at the time of his arrest.

Kinsman, 49, was reported missing by a neighbour on June 28, 2017.

Police had said McArthur had a long-term sexual relationship with Kinsman, but Idsinga refused to discuss what if any relationship he might have had with the other victims. Mahmudi was reported missing in 2015.

The known victims are believed to have disappeared between 2012 and March of past year, authorities said. However, in August 2017, the police started Project Prism, which was an attempt to find the whereabouts of Esen and Kinsman.

Just four per cent of serial killers dismember their victims' bodies and dispose of the remains, according to data compiled by the research group.

McArthur has not been charged in connection to the disappearances of Skanda Navaratnam or Abdulbasir Faizi, who both went missing in 2010.

Investigators have seized 12 such planters and continue to search the properties with the belief that there are more remains to be recovered. He is scheduled to appear in court February 14 for a plea appearance. "He would drink at the bar with people and never did I pick up something like this", she said of McArthur.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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