Alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur facing sixth murder charge
Published Friday, February 23, 2018 5:44AM EST
Last Updated Friday, February 23, 2018 4:38PM EST
Toronto police have laid a new murder charge against alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur after identifying two other men among the remains found in garden planters at a home in the city.
Det. Sgt. Hank Idsinga told reporters Friday they have now identified the remains of Skandaraj “Skanda” Navaratnam and have laid a new first-degree murder charge against McArthur.
That brings the number of men McArthur is accused of killing to six.
Navaratnam, 40, went missing in September, 2010, and was the focus of a police investigation called Project Houston. That project began in 2013 to search for Navaratnam, Majeed Kayhan, a 58-year-old who was reported missing in October 2012, and one other missing man from the Gay Village.
Police also announced the identification of the remains of Soroush Mahmudi, a 50-year-old who was reported missing in 2015. They had previously identified the remains of Andrew Kinsman, 49, who went missing in late June 2017.
The 66-year-old McArthur is already facing murder charges in the deaths of Mahmudi and Kinsman. Idsinga said police relied on fingerprint and dental records to identify those remains.
McArthur is already facing first-degree murder in connection with the Kayhan’s presumed death, as well as those of Selim Esen and Dean Lisowick.
Idsinga said DNA analyses on the remains of three other people found in the planters are ongoing.
Excavation at the Toronto home where McArthur stored items for his landscaping business -- and where the planters were found -- ended on Feb. 14, and the home was released back to its owners.
Police have identified at least 30 properties where McArthur performed work as part of his landscaping business, and are planning excavations on at least two of those.
Officers have also been searching McArthur's Toronto apartment since his arrest on Jan. 18. They expect to remain there for several more weeks.
Idsinga said investigators anticipate further charges to be laid, noting they are looking for connections between McArthur and several outstanding murders and missing persons cases.
“There's even some ... occurrences where there's been a sudden death that we're looking at," he said.
He added that police are tracing McArthur's whereabouts "as far back as we can go."
Idsinga added that all the evidence unearthed so far indicates that McArthur acted alone in his alleged crimes.
None of the allegations against McArthur have been proven in court.