Ex-con ar­rested in slay­ing of Cana­dian in Belize

24 Hours Toronto - - News - BRAD HUNTER

Cops in Belize have charged a 50-year-old ex-con with mur­der in the vi­cious slay­ing of a for­mer Toronto man.

But — like many po­lice probes in the Cen­tral Amer­i­can coun­try — de­tec­tives aren’t say­ing if the mur­der was part of a broader con­spir­acy in tiny Corozal.

Gabriel Bochnia, 38, was shot out­side his home late Oct. 4 as his wife and chil­dren looked on in hor­ror.

Con­trac­tor Bochnia died later in hos­pi­tal de­spite ef­forts to save him by his fam­ily and neigh­bours.

Cops said the ac­cused killer was known to Bochnia and his fam­ily, and the vic­tim even shouted out “Polo” be­fore gun­fire shat­tered the quiet trop­i­cal evening.

One of the bul­lets hit Bochnia in the stom­ach.

The masked killer also pointed the gun at Bochnia’s wife but it mis­fired and he fled. Charged is Apolo­nio “Polo” Kiou, 50, a con­struc­tion worker who re­port­edly was a for­mer em­ployee of Bochnia. How­ever, sources told Post­media Net­work that Kiou — an ex-jail­bird — bore no grudge against the pop­u­lar Cana­dian.

In­stead, one source said that the mur­der may be linked to a real es­tate spec­u­la­tion power play that could also have been the rea­son for the un­solved April mur­der in Belize of Francesca Ma­tus, 52, of Keswick.

The coun­try is one of the most vi­o­lent in the world, with 104 homi­cides so far in 2017 in a pop­u­la­tion of just 387,000.

Many of the vic­tims have been for­eign na­tion­als.

Mean­while, Kate Bochnia told Post­media Net­work that her brother’s body will be flown back to Toronto this week.

Vis­i­ta­tion is planned for the DeMarco Fu­neral Home Keele Chapel on Fri­day, with a fu­neral planned for Satur­day at St. Teresa Ro­man Catholic Church at 110 Tenth St. in Eto­bi­coke.

Gabriel Bochnia

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