Six men have been found guilty of manslaughter by the B.C. Supreme Court after the shooting deaths of two people in 2016.
A judge convicted Harinam Cox, Shamil Ali, Gopal Figueredo, Erlan Acosta, Ellwood Bradbury and Matthew Stewart on charges of kidnapping, confinement, extortion, aggravated assault and two counts each of manslaughter in the deaths of Samantha Le and Xuan Van Vy Ba-Cao.
It happened between Sept. 17 and 19, 2016.
Court documents show the kidnap victim was a man who conducted an illegal drug business out of his East Vancouver home. Cox and Figueredo came to the victim’s house to meet with him. At the time, his girlfriend and roommate were out of the house — but they arrived home early.
When the victim saw them, he realized he was surrounded by three or four masked men, who then punched him in the face.
The victim said while he was tied up and thrown down the stairs, he heard four gunshots — but he assumed no one had been shot because there was no reason for that to happen.
In fact, Le and Ba-Cao had both been shot in the head at close range.
The victim was then forcibly confined in a house in Surrey for two days. He was held in a “kill room,” which had plastic sheeting on the walls and ceiling.
He was told there was a $250,000 hit on his head — but he had “the option of buying himself out of it through payment of $1 million in cash, drugs or jewellery,” according to court documents.
The ransom was later lowered to $500,000.
Police later rescued the man, bound and injured, from a car with three of the accused after a brief chase.
Although the judge said it was impossible to tell who pulled the trigger, causing the deaths of Le and Ba-Cao, it wasn’t necessary to do so.
He said they all knew they were there to forcibly kidnap the victim, which in itself was a dangerous act and risked causing bodily harm.
“For those reasons, I find each of the accused is a party to the crime of manslaughter and therefore guilty of that offence,” reads the judgement.
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