Canadian serial killer gets life sentence

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Serial killer Bruce McArthur (left) pleads guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder.

McArthur, 67, received eight concurrent life sentences from Justice John McMahon, and will not be eligible for parole for 25 years, when he's 91.

According to Global News Canada, judges decided this week that McArthur could be eligible for parole 25 years into his sentence.

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Canadian serial killer Bruce McArthur has been handed a life sentence for the murder of eight men.

McArthur's confirmed victims, whom he murdered between 2010 and 2017, are Selim Esen, Andrew Kinsman, Majeed Kayhan, Dean Lisowick, Skandaraj Navaratnam, Soroush Mahmudi, Kirushna Kan withagaratnam, and Abdulbasir Faizi.

The decision Friday followed hearings earlier this week in which prosecutors laid out details about the crimes committed by McArthur, who dismembered his victims and buried their remains in a planter belonging to one of his clients, as well as in a ravine behind the client's house.

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A mural in the Gay Village area of Toronto, where five victims disappeared, Feb 8, 2019.

But at Toronto Police Headquarters the feeling was one of closure in the wake of McArthur's sentencing on Friday.

McMahon called McArthur a "sexual predator" and a "serial killer" who "lured his victims on the pretext of consensual sex and ended up killing them for his own warped and sick gratification".

However, Helen Kennedy, the executive director of LGBT+ rights group Egale, said an independent judge-led investigation should be carried out into the police's handling of McArthur case specifically.

After the sentencing, Nicole Borthwick, who knew some of the victims, said outside court that the judge was too lenient.

"We will continue to do what we can to support the community and look for opportunities to improve our relationship", Gray said in an email to The Washington Post.

Several members of the gay community told reporters outside the courthouse they were disappointed McArthur did not receive a harsher penalty, while others accepted that he would likely die behind bars.

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Since then, police have investigated locations around Toronto where McArthur worked as a landscaper.

The prosecution said that a frequent site of the killings was McArthur's bedroom and that he repeatedly strangled his victims either with his hands or with rope and a metal bar.

"Especially when it comes to race and class and the LGBTQ community there has always been a distance in terms of how police work with the community", said Haran Vijayanathan, of the Toronto-based Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention group.

On the day McArthur was arrested, January 18, 2018, police surveilling McArthur saw a man, identified in the agreed statement of facts as "John", meet up with McArthur and enter his apartment.

Authorities also located a calendar belonging to Kinsman which had the entry "Bruce" on the day in June 2017 that he went missing. A search of the suspect's hard drive for evidence revealed eight folders labeled with the names of different men.

He then posed their bodies for photographs, with numerous images featuring the same fur coat. He suddenly left his wife and two children and moved to Toronto in 1997, where he became well known within the gay community.

The last victim, Andrew Kinsman, was superintendent of McArthur's apartment building.

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Saunders echoed Idsinga's statement but said no length of sentence would be enough for some.

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