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Woman shocked to learn gay serial killer Bruce McArthur had buried seven men in her flowerbeds

Lily Wakefield April 13, 2021
Photo of gay serial killer Bruce McArthur, who staged photos of victims' corpses.

Bruce McArthur, a landscaper, killed eight men with ties to Toronto's gay village. (Facebook)

A woman has recalled the shocking moment she realised gay Canadian serial killer Bruce McArthur had buried seven men in her flowerbeds.

McArthur was arrested in 2018, and found guilty of killing and dismembering eight men between 2010 and 2017, after luring them from Toronto’s Gay Village.

The 69-year-old later staged photos with some of the corpses, dressing them up in fur coats and putting cigars in their mouths.

Karen Fraser and her husband Ron Smith had been friendly with McArthur for years, and would let him store tools in their garage in exchange for him cutting their grass.

But, speaking to Fox News ahead of her appearance in a true-crime documentary about the case, Fraser recalled the shocking moment she discovered McArthur has been doing much more sinister things on their property.

In January 2018, police arrived at Fraser’s house and told her she needed to leave so they could perform a search.

She said: “Half of me was backing away and staring in horror. The other half was trying to think clearly.

“They didn’t have a search warrant and I was fully aware of it. I really didn’t have to pay any attention to them if I didn’t want to.

“But when the officer said a serious crime had been committed and Bruce McArthur had been arrested, I then knew it was serious. The officer was clearly upset so something big was happening.”

Seven of McArthur’s eight victims were found buried in Fraser’s large flower beds. His eighth victim was found in a ravine behind their property.

Although her first instinct was to “defend” McArthur, Fraser said: “The detective just said to me one night, ‘Karen, don’t waste your sympathy on that man. We’ve never had as much evidence against someone as we have against him.

“‘Don’t waste your good feelings on that man.’ And that was it.”

Fraser still struggles with the “overwhelming” reality of situation, and said: “On a hot day, if we saw the flowers drooping a bit, my partner and I would water them.

“So we were watering the planters where the victims were buried.

“I can’t give you words to describe how incredibly horrible that was. And cruel.

“It’s just every negative word you can come up with. Sometimes your mind just gets overwhelmed by it all.”

Bruce McArthur was handed eight life sentences for his crimes

Gay serial killer Bruce McArthur pleaded guilty to eight counts of first degree murder, and was handed eight life sentences in Toronto in 2019.

Given no chance of parole for the first 25 years of his sentence, he will not be eligible for release until he is 91.

Some of McArthur’s eight victims – Skandaraj (Skanda) Navaratnam, Soroush Mahmudi, Dean Lisowick, Majeed Kayhan, Selim Esen, Andrew Kinsman, Kirushnakumar Kanagaratnam and Abdulbasir Faizi – were of Middle Eastern and South Asian descent.

During McArthur’s trial, prosecutor Michael Cantlon said: “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.

“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.”

More: Canada, Gay, murder

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