Quebec Shutter Island actor arrested in connection with violent assault

Police in Massachusetts have arrested a Laval, Que. man who had minor roles in the films Shutter Island and The Fighter, more than four years after a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Ziad Akl fled Canada after bouncer was beaten, stabbed at Laval after hours club in 2009

Elias Akl (left) and Ziad Akl (right) were wanted in connection with an assault on a bouncer at an after hours club in Laval in December 2009. (Laval police)

A Laval, Que. man who had minor roles in the films Shutter Island and The Fighter, has been arrested in the U.S., more than five years after a warrant was issued for his arrest in connection with a violent bar brawl.  

Ziad Akl, 40, and his brother Elias have been on the lam since December 2009, when an alleged dispute in an after hours club in Laval escalated, leaving a bouncer at the Red Lite club badly beaten and suffering from stab wounds. 

The brothers were identified by witnesses at the scene, said Const. Nathalie Lorrain of the Laval police. 

"When we tried to arrest them, we found out they had both fled the country," she said.

Lorrain said police quickly located Ziad Akl, who fled to the Boston-area with his wife and children. 

However, it took some time to get the authorization to have local police pick him up. 

"Once that was done, we told them to [arrest him]," she said. "He wasn't really hiding. He's very recognizable with his tattoos."

Ziad Akl— who has tattoos cover his head, arms and part of his face — had minor roles as inmates in both Shutter Island and The Fighter. 

Ziad Akl - seen here on left in a still shot from the film The Fighter, starring Christian Bale, on right - was arrested June 4 in connection with a 2009 assault in Laval. (Alliance Films)

According to the Boston Globe, Ziad Akl was arrested June 4 and was ordered by a federal judge to face assault charges connected to the bar brawl. He waived his right to contest extradition. 

The newspaper reports that he crossed the border into the U.S. three days after the incident and had been working at a gas station in Salem, N.H. until recently.

Elias Akl is still on the run and wanted by police. 

"The last trace we have of him, he was in Costa Rica," Lorrain said. "We don't have extradition with that country so it's not possible for us to pick him up there."

It could take another week before Ziad Akl is returned to Canada, according to Laval police.

When he does, he'll appear in court in Laval on aggravated assault charges and could face new charges related to his flight from justice. 


  • An earlier version of the story incorrectly stated that police were still searching for both Ziad and Elias Akl. In fact, police have arrested Ziad Akl.
    Jun 11, 2014 11:47 AM ET