Police open homicide investigation at arson scene in east Hamilton

Police have discovered the remains of a 21-year-old man at the scene of an early Saturday arson in east Hamilton.
Hamilton police have opened a homicide investigation after discovering the remains of a man in a burned out building. (Adam Carter/CBC)

Police have opened a homicide investigation after discovering the remains of a 21-year-old man in a building destroyed by fire in east Hamilton.

The body of Hamilton resident Samir Anbari was found Sunday in the burned out shell of a business at 810 Main Street East.

Police were called to the burning building at Main and Ashford early Saturday.

On Sunday, Hamilton police said a Mississauga man had been arrested and charged with arson in connection with the fire.

Thirty-year-old Sami Karnaz of Mississauga was arrested with the help of Peel police.

Karnaz has been charged with arson and disregard for human life.

The fire broke out at a former 7-Eleven at the corner of Ashford Boulevard and Main Street East, which was being converted into a Subway restaurant.

"Shortly before 4 a.m. Saturday, we got a call there was a fire and a possible explosion," said Staff Sgt. Jack Longhorn. "When we got there the place was totally involved with flames."

Police at the time said one employee working on the renovation of the building could not be accounted for.

The building was gutted and heavily damaged by the fire.

Heavy equipment and work crews sifted through rubble of what was left of the building on Sunday.

The coroner will conduct an autopsy Monday to determine Anbari's cause of death.