Bruce McArthur: Canadian serial killer sentenced to life for the murders of eight men in Toronto

The sentencing follows Mcarthur's guilty plea for the death of eight murders involving men he met in Toronto's Gay Village

Chris Riotta
New York
Friday 08 February 2019 19:03
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Serial killer Bruce McArthur has been sentenced to life in prison for the brutal murders of eight men in Canada.
Serial killer Bruce McArthur has been sentenced to life in prison for the brutal murders of eight men in Canada.

Bruce McArthur has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for at least 25 years after pleading guilty in January to eight counts of first-degree murder.

McArthur sexually assaulted, killed and dismembered men he met in Toronto’s Gay Village district over seven years.

Police narrowed a list of suspects in the case after seeing surveillance video of the last victim, Andrew Kinsman, enter a red Dodge Caravan in 2017. They later linked that vehicle to McArthur and found Kinsman’s blood and semen in it after McArthur sold it to a wreck yard.

He staged photos of some of his victims after they died, posing corpses in fur coats and cigars in their mouths, a prosecutor said Monday as the sentencing hearing began.

Prosecutor Michael Cantlon said McArthur would later access some of the photos long after the killings. The prosecution didn’t display the images found on McArthur’s electronic devices during the session, but said they included after-death photos of six of the eight victims.

“Victims were posed naked, with cigars in their mouth, shaved, and/or made to wear a fur coat and hat,” Mr Cantlon said.

He also said police found a naked man handcuffed to the bed when they raided McArthur’s home and arrested him last year on 18 January. He said police moved in when they realized McArthur had someone over. The man, who survived, was identified only as Middle Eastern and named “John.”

McArthur, now 67, moved to the Toronto area around 2000 and previously lived in a suburb where he was married, raised two children and worked as a traveling salesman of underwear and socks.

His landscaping business was small, but he periodically hired workers, including a 40-year-old man who disappeared in 2010.

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.

“Many of the victims had ties to Toronto’s LGBT village and had a social life within that community. Many met or corresponded with Mr. McArthur through dating apps,” Mr Cantlon said. “Some were forced to live parts of their life in secret because of their orientation. Some lacked stable housing.”

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

One victim hid the fact that he was gay from his Muslim family. Another was a recent immigrant with a drug problem. Another was a refugee who was ordered deported. Another alleged victim was homeless, smoked crack cocaine and worked as a prostitute.

Mr Cantlon said most of the killings were facilitated under the pretense of sex. He said McArthur repeatedly strangled his victims with rope.

The prosecutor said McArthur shaved victims after he killed them and kept some hair stored. He also held onto items belonging to them.

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Mr Cantlon also said McArthur has shown some remorse by pleading guilty to the charges. He said there is no evidence McArthur has murdered anyone else.

Additional reporting by AP. More follows…

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