British Columbia

Charges laid in 2007 Surrey, B.C., slaying

The B.C. Crown has charged three people with first-degree murder in connection with the killing of a Surrey, B.C., mother.

The B.C. Crown has charged three people with first-degree murder in connection with the killing of  Surrey, B.C., mother Amanpreet Kaur Bahia.

One of those charged is the dead woman’s husband, 41-year-old Baljinder Singh Bahia. Also charged are a woman named Tanpreet Kaur Athwal, a 42-year-old realtor, and Eduard Baranec, 33.

On Monday, the three made a brief court appearance in B.C. Supreme Court in Surrey. They’ve been remanded in custody until their next court appearance on Feb 4.

Harpal Sandhu, a cousin of Amanpreet Kaur Bahia, said a homicide detective first contacted the family with the news on Friday.

"We have been waiting for four years," Sandhu said. "He meet us in the restaurant … he told me they arrested three guys."

Sandhu said Bahia, a 33-year-old mother of three young girls, was unhappy in her marriage and spent long hours working on the blueberry farm she and her husband owned in Cloverdale, B.C.

On Monday, Sandhu came to RCMP headquarters in Vancouver to express her gratitude to police.

"Now I am really, really proud of you guys. I don't know how to say thank you. Thank you so much. Now my sister's soul can maybe have a little peace." Sandhu said.

Amanpreet Kaur Bahia, 33, was found dead inside her home in 2007. (Meera Bains/CBC)

Bahia was found dead inside her home in Surrey's Newton neighbourhood in February 2007 by relatives who also lived in the home.

Two of Bahia’s three children were in the house when her body was discovered.

The story made headlines when Bahia's husband identified himself as a suspect right after his wife's death, but police said at the time he was not on their official suspects list.

RCMP are refusing to comment on the relationship of the three accused.

Nor will they discuss whether they are investigating Eduard Baranec for the disappearance of a 15-year-old girl from Mission, B.C. in 2007.

Katelyn Noble's family said she left Mission to live in Saskatchewan with Baranec and another man.