Toronto serial killer staged photographs with victims, court hears

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Toronto serial killer staged photographs with victims, court hears

This story contains graphic details.

Toronto police have been blasted for neglect in pursuing the disappearances of men for years in the gay village, and for how they dealt with McArthur whom they had come into contact with several times.

To the investigators entrusted with holding Bruce McArthur to account for every last one of his crimes, Kirushna Kumar Kanagaratnam was the unknown man, the only one whose face they couldn't place and whose name they were desperate to learn - desperate enough last March to publicize a cropped photo of him, appealing to the masses to give him an identity in death.

McArthur asked the victim to lie on the coat and instructed him to put an arm behind his back.

Prosecutor Michael Cantlon described how self-employed landscaper Bruce McArthur - who admitted last week to killing eight men as the so-called Gay Village serial killer - kept an extensive collection of the creepy images of his victims.

Many said they had long grappled with the disappearance of a son, father, brother or friend only to learn past year that their loved one had been killed and dismembered at some point between 2010 and 2017. Numerous victims, for instance, had to hide their sexuality from family members or contend with unstable housing situations, he said.

"There is evidence that Mr McArthur sought out and exploited these vulnerabilities to continue his crimes undetected", the prosecutor said.

The victims fit a pattern: Most were of Middle Eastern or South Asian descent and lived on the margins of Canadian society, their disappearances attracting little attention.

The man later identified as John fit the profile in almost every way, court heard.

The Crown argued for the eight sentences to be served over two consecutive terms, meaning McArthur would not be able to apply for parole until he had spent 50 years in prison - at which point he would be 116 years old. A friend said the man is of Middle Eastern origin and is now living in a country where it would not be safe to disclose his sexual orientation.

"McArthur did not confess", Harper said.

The Globe and Mail reports: "Police interviewed Mr. McArthur twice in the years before his arrest in January, 2018".

Court heard that John told McArthur: "It was a secret and nobody knew".

Once John had undressed, McArthur announced he wanted to "try something different" and bound the man to the bed with handcuffs.

A number of his victims had been strangled. "There were no holes in the bag". He was taping his victim's mouth shut at the moment police knocked'.

The macabre details emerged as the sentencing hearing began for the former gardener who preyed on men from Toronto's Gay Village district.

By this time, McArthur was very much on the police radar after officers has linked his auto to the 2017 disappearance of Andrew Kinsman, later revealed as the eighth murder victim, court heard.

A woman speaking on behalf of the Esen family had harsh words for McArthur and police.

Harper argued that, although both McArthur and Wettlaufer killed eight people, there were significant differences in their cases. McArthur had known most of his victims for years. They later charged McArthur for the murders of Majeed Kayhan, Dean Lisowick, Soroush Mahmudi, Skandaraj Navaratnam, Abdulbasir Faizi and Kanagaratnam.

Pictures recovered from those folders depict the men posed with cigars in their mouths and wearing fur coats and hats after their deaths.

Wearing a black cable-knit sweater and plaid collared shirt, McArthur sat hunched in the dock of a Toronto courtroom, as the court heard a detailed statement of facts presented by the crown.

The victim managed to roll away and escaped the van. "An officer released Mr. McArthur without charges, believing his statement to be credible".

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