On the morning of June 30th, 2009, four female bodies were discovered in a submerged Nissan Sentra with a broken left taillight, in the Rideau Canal in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. The Shafia sisters Zainab, 19, Sahar, 17, and Geeti, 13, along with their supposed “Auntie” Rona Amir Mohammed, 53, were found dead under water in front of the northernmost Kingston Mills lock.
That same morning, three people showed up at police headquarters to file a missing persons report: Mohammad Shafia, the girls’ father, Tooba Mohammad Yahya, their mother, and Hamed Shafia, their 18-year-old brother.
Police initially believed that it was a tragic accident, but the more questions the police asked the family, the stranger their story became. What police discovered over the next three weeks would lead to one of the most high-profile murder trials in Canadian history. The case would shed a light on the ancient practice of honour killing and the clash of Canadian values and the integration of immigrants in Western society.
- For more information on this case, please check out the following investigative programs:
- Preliminary Examination of so-called “Honour Killings” in Canada – The Canadian Department of Justice 2016
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