Elnaz Hajtamiri’s ex-boyfriend has been charged with kidnapping during his violent abduction from a Wasaga Beach home earlier this year, according to the Ontario Provincial Police.
Mohamad Lilo of Brossard, Que. also faces charges of attempted murder and attempted kidnapping in connection with an earlier assault on the 37-year-old woman in a Richmond Hill, Ont. parking lot on December 21, when Hajtamiri was beaten with a frying pan.
Lilo was arrested at a home in Brossard by Ontario Provincial Police on Tuesday and is being flown back to Ontario ahead of a court date on Wednesday, Ontario Provincial Police spokesman Bill Dickson said at CBC News.
In a statement to CBC News, Hajtamiri’s family thanked the police for their work, saying they hope the development brings them closer to them.
“It has been a trying and painful six months since her disappearance, as we have continued to search for her relentlessly. We have only been met with silence from the kidnappers, and no trace has been found of our beautiful daughter,” they said.
“We hope the arrest of this suspect brings us closer to his search.”
Dickson called Tuesday’s arrest “a major milestone.”
“But it’s not over,” he said. “At the end of the day, we have to find Elnaz Hajtamiri, we have to find out what happened to him. We owe it to his family, we owe it to his community.”
Tuesday’s charges come about three months after two other men were charged in connection with the December assault.
They also come after CBC News reported in April that Lilo had hired a private detective to watch Hajtamiri before his January abduction. He was later charged with criminal harassment and released on bail.
Hajtamiri, who lives in the Toronto area, has been missing since being forcibly taken away by three men in police gear on the evening of January 12. She was abducted from a home where she was staying with relatives in the popular tourist area at the foot of Georgian Bay, about two hours drive north of Toronto.
The ex-boyfriend was also Hajtamiri’s business partner
As previously reported, sources told CBC News that Lilo is Hajtamiri’s former boyfriend, who also goes by the surname Tamiri, and the two broke up last October.
Dickson told CBC News on Tuesday that Lilo was also a former business partner of Hajtamiri, but said he had no further details on that relationship.
Hajtamiri, who was born in Iran, arrived in Canada in 2018 and found work in the import-export shipping industry, according to a family press release, but had recently quit her job to retire. focus on starting a cake making business.
She has not yet been located.
The charges against Lilo have yet to be proven in court. He is expected to appear in court on July 13.
Police say they are continuing to investigate and “anything is possible” in terms of further arrests or charges.
“Someone may still have that information out there that could lead our investigators to find out where Elnaz is,” Dickson said.
Hajtamiri is described as 5’3″ with a slim build and black hair that had been shoulder length until it was cut short shortly before her abduction.
Anyone with information is asked to call the dedicated inquiry line at 1-833-728-3415 or their local police department. Anonymous tips can be shared with Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).