Bruce McArthur (police handout)

Grisly details emerge at serial killer Bruce McArthur’s sentencing hearing

The 67-year-old self-employed landscaper was arrested in January 2018

The prosecutor in the case of a serial killer who preyed on men in Toronto’s gay village says Bruce McArthur strangled many of his victims with a rope and pipe and took photographs of their bodies after their deaths.

Crown attorney Michael Cantlon is going through a detailed agreed statement of facts at a sentencing hearing for 67-year-old McArthur, who pleaded guilty last week to first-degree murder in the deaths of eight men over a seven-year period.

READ MORE: Bruce McArthur pleads guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder

Cantlon says McArthur posed many of his victims’ bodies for photographs after the murders, and stored the images on various digital devices in his apartment.

He says police found the photographs in a covert operation during which they copied part of McArthur’s computer hard drive.

Cantlon says McArthur posed at least one victim with a cigar in his mouth.

The prosecutor warned victims’ family, friends and others in the courtroom that the specifics of the murders will be gruesome and may even cause some to be sick.

“For years, members of LGBTQ community believed they were being targeted by a killer,” Cantlon told the court. “They were right.”

READ MORE: Officer involved in previous McArthur arrest charged with insubordination

Police arrested McArthur a year ago and eventually charged him in the deaths of Selim Esen, Andrew Kinsman, Majeed Kayhan, Dean Lisowick, Soroush Mahmudi, Skandaraj Navaratnam, Abdulbasir Faizi, and Kirushna Kanagaratnam. All of the men went missing from Toronto’s gay village.

McArthur, a self-employed landscaper, admitted he sexually assaulted and forcibly confined many of his victims before murdering them.

Police found victims’ belongings in McArthur’s apartment, including a bracelet, jewelry and a notebook. They also found a duffel bag containing duct tape, a surgical glove, rope, zip ties, a bungee cord and syringes in McArthur’s bedroom along with the DNA of several victims inside his van.

Cantlon said Kinsman’s disappearance is what led police to a break in the case.

Investigators found Kinsman’s calendar with the entry titled “Bruce” dated June 26, 2017 — the day he disappeared. They also found surveillance footage where Kinsman lived showing him getting into a red Dodge Caravan. They couldn’t make out the van’s plates or who was driving.

A Dodge dealership worker told police it was a 2004 Dodge Caravan and when they requested information from Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation, they received a list of 6,181 red such vehicles made between 2003 and 2006.

Cantlon said the lead detective on the case then cross referenced the name Bruce with those vehicle owners and came back with five matches. Only one had previous contact with police: McArthur.

Court heard police arrested McArthur in 2016 for assault, but never laid any charges. Court also heard police interviewed McArthur as a witness years earlier relation to three of the victims.

Liam Casey, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Central Mountain Air suspending flights, effective April 11

The airline is suspending scheduled flights through to June 7

UPDATED: Rocky Mountaineer delays season until July 1

The popular luxury train had previously suspended operations through April due to COVID-19

COVID-19: Four weeks of downtime coming for Cariboo Pulp and Paper mill employees

West Fraser announces additional temporary production reductions in response to COVID-19

COVID-19: Caring for your mental health during a global pandemic

Canadian Mental Health Association Quesnel offers advice, resources to deal with anxiety and stress

Quesnel family pinning autism awareness onto community

Laura and Matthew Hender have sold thousands of autism awareness pins over the past eight years

COVID-19: 4 new deaths, 25 new cases but only in Vancouver Coastal, Fraser Health

A total of 1,291 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

COVID-19: Don’t get away for Easter weekend, Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

John Horgan, Adrian Dix call 130 faith leaders as holidays approach

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

RCMP call on kids to name latest foal recruits

The baby horses names are to start with the letter ‘S’

As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

Non-commercial land crossing dipped by 95%, air travel dropped by 96 per cent, according to the CBSA

Logan Boulet Effect: Green Shirt Day calls on Canadians to become organ donors

While social distancing, the day also honours the 16 lives lost in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos Crash

COMMENTARY: Knowing where COVID-19 cases are does not protect you

Dr. Bonnie Henry explains why B.C. withholds community names

B.C. wide burning restrictions come into effect April 16

‘Larger open burns pose an unnecessary risk and could detract from wildfire detection’

Most Read