Alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur has been charged with a seventh count of first-degree murder following a court appearance in Toronto on Wednesday.
The crown attorney identified the alleged victim as 42-year-old Abdulbasir Faizi, one of the missing men from Project Houston, a police task force launched in November 2012 to investigate the disappearances of men from the city’s gay community.
The accused was seen wearing an orange jumpsuit in the segregation unit of the Toronto South Detention Centre. He is scheduled to make another court appearance by video on April 25.
The court was told that Faizi was reported missing on Dec. 29, 2010. His car was found abandoned days later on Moore Avenue not far from the home on Mallory Crescent in Toronto where McArthur did landscape work and where planters with human remains were found.
Since McArthur’s arrest in January, police said they have found the remains of seven people in planters at a Toronto property where McArthur used to work.
WATCH: Toronto police lay 7th first-degree charge against Bruce McArthur. Catherine McDonald reports.
Investigators previously identified three of the seven sets of remains as belonging to Andrew Kinsman, Soroush Mahmudi and Skandaraj Navaratnam.
Det. Sgt. Hank Idsinga told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday that investigators have now identified three more as belonging to Selim Esen, Dean Lisowick, and Faizi.
Idsinga said investigators are now finished with the planters and no further remains have been found.
The remains of alleged victim Majeed Kayhan have not yet been identified.
McArthur, a self-employed landscaper, was arrested and charged with the first-degree murder of Esen and Kinsman on Jan. 18 following a months-long probe into cases of missing men from the city’s Church-Wellesley Village.
On Jan. 29, police said McArthur was charged with three more counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Kayhan, Lisowick and Mahmudi.
On Feb. 23, McArthur was charged with a sixth count of first-degree murder in the death of Navaratnam.
On Wednesday, Police also released an enhanced version of a photograph released in early March of the body of an unidentified man they said is an alleged victim of McArthur.
The photo, which was enhanced by Nikki Ward, a graphic artist and prominent member of the LGBTQ community, along with a rendition of the victim drawn by a forensic artist with the Toronto Police Service, will be placed on a flyer and distributed both online and around the community.
Idsinga said investigators are currently reviewing 15 homicide cold cases between 1975 and 1997.
As a result of tips and help from the public, police will also search 75 properties connected to McArthur beginning next month.
VIDEO: A seventh murder charge has been laid against alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur. Catherine McDonald brings us the latest.
The charges against McArthur haven’t been proven in court.
Anyone who retained McArthur to do landscaping work or who has information has been asked to contact the Toronto police team dedicated to the investigation at 416-808-2021 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-8477.
—With files from Jessica Patton
— With files from Catherine McDonald and David Shum
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