Ottawa police have charged Ian Bush with three counts of first-degree murder in the triple homicide of a retired tax judge, his wife and a neighbour, which took place in June 2007.
Bush, 59, is also accused in a home invasion at the condo of Ernest Côté, a 101-year-old Second World War veteran, in December 2014.
- BACKGROUND | 2007 unsolved triple homicide in Ottawa
Police said DNA evidence was found at the scene of the 2007 slayings of 77-year-old retired tax judge Alban Garon, his wife, 73-year-old Raymonde, and their 78-year-old friend and neighbour Marie-Claire Beniskos. The three were found in the couple's Ottawa home with plastic bags over their heads.
The DNA evidence from that crime scene was linked to the home invasion, according to Acting Ottawa Police Chief Jill Skinner. Côté was also left with a plastic bag over his head, although he survived.
On Friday afternoon, Skinner announced the murder charges against Bush, who is scheduled to return to court on Saturday morning to officially have the charges read to him.
This week, sources said police had investigated a link between that case and the home invasion for several weeks.
Skinner said police are checking files from across Canada for any links to this case. Staff-Sgt. Bruce Pirt also said the triple homicide case file has been closed by Ottawa police.
Also faces 11 weapons charges
Bush had appeared in court on Friday morning to face 11 new weapons charges and hear the results of a court-ordered psychiatric assessment connected to the home invasion.
He was found fit to stand trial in the case, where the 101-year-old veteran was allegedly robbed and tied up and left with a plastic bag over his head.
Bush was released from custody after Friday morning's appearance, but re-arrested and taken to be questioned by Ottawa police major crime detectives about the unsolved triple homicide.
Family members of the three homicide victims released a joint statement, through police, regarding the charges on Friday afternoon.
"The friendship that linked Marie-Claire, Raymonde and Alban also unites our families by force of circumstance," the statement read.
"We wish to thank all those who have supported us during this ordeal and who continue to lend us their strength against all that is yet to come. We now ask media to kindly respect our privacy."
In connection with the home invasion, Bush faces charges including attempted murder, robbery, forcible confinement, breaking and entering, two counts of using a credit card obtained by crime, plus the 11 charges for possessing illegal weapons.
His trial on the home invasion charges had previously been scheduled to begin March 6.
This week Bush's lawyer, Geraldine Castle-Trudel, said police executed two search warrants related to her client. One allowed police to take a DNA sample from Bush and a second allowed officers to enter Bush's family home in the east Ottawa suburb of Orléans, according to Castle-Trudel.
"The cards are on the table, now we will vigorously challenge the accusation. My client advises me he has absolutely had nothing to do with it in which case that's what the trial's all about," Castle-Trudel said Friday.
She also raised the question of a fair trial after news of his pending arrest on murder charges was leaked earlier in the week.
"The person who deliberately set out to leak this stuff to the press, to get my client convicted in the court of public opinion by a lynch mob, [had] an absolute disregard … not just for my client's rights, for Canadian rights to trust their police, to behave as proper law enforcement officers upholding the law," she said.