World-renowned neurosurgeon Mohammed Shamji admitted to killing his physician wife, Dr. Elana Fric, in December 2016 at a pretrial hearing in Ontario Superior Court. This prevents a further ordeal of a trial. Jury selection was to have happened this week.
Shamji pleaded guilty to second-degree murder as two of the couple’s three children and Fric’s parents sat in court. It was the first time the kids, now 11 and 14, have seen their father since his arrest.
Shamji has been in custody at a GTA detention centre since his arrest following the murder. Shamji was initially charged with first-degree murder and committing an indignity to human remains in the death of his wife, a Scarborough-based family physician and mother of the couple’s three children.
Second-degree murder carries an automatic life sentence with no parole eligibility for 10 years.
Family, friends, colleagues and others affected by Shamji’s actions will have the opportunity to file victim impact statements before he is sentenced.
According to a two-page agreed statement of facts read in court Monday, the couple got into an argument at the family home on November 30, 2016 — the same night she was reported missing.
Their three children — then age 3, 8 and 11 — were asleep at the time. But the eldest daughter awoke to the sound of her mother screaming and a clamour of banging coming from her parents’ room.
When their daughter went to her parents’ room to investigate the noises, the document said, Shamji ordered her back to bed. He then packed Fric’s body into a suitcase and disposed of her body in the Humber River, the statement said. He did not call police. -CINEWS