Charges have been laid in connection to the death of 19-year-old Surrey student Bhavkiran (Kiran) Dhesi.
During a press conference on Monday morning, the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) announced that Harjot Singh Deo, 21, has been arrested and charged with one count of second-degree murder.
Deo was arrested on May 10, 2019, at Vancouver International Airport.
IHIT said Deo had “landed” in Vancouver but did not go into further details about where he had gone or if he was with anyone at the time.
The investigation began on August 2, 2017, at around 12:20 am, when Dhesi was found inside a burning vehicle in the 18700-block of 24 Avenue in Surrey. Her death was deemed a homicide and IHIT took over the case.
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Then, at a press conference in December 2018, IHIT said it was looking for two vehicles believed to be involved in the homicide: a dark grey Audi Q7 and a dark grey Dodge Ram truck. On December 22, IHIT announced the Audi was recovered.
During Monday’s press conference, IHIT Supt. Donna Richardson said IHIT investigators “worked tirelessly since August of 2017 to gather sufficient evidence to support criminal charges.”
She added it was a “complex investigation with considerable contributions made by IHIT’s policing partners and is yet another example of the positive outcomes made when IHIT and its partners work cohesively towards a common goal.”
Surrey RCMP Assistant Commissioner Dwayne McDonald said he hopes there can be some comfort with Deo’s arrest.
“Miss Dhesi was a strong young woman with a promising future ahead of her. At her young age, she had already persevered through challenges and adversity in her life,” he said. Miss Dhesi’s loss will continue to be felt by her family and friends as well as our community.”
Richardson confirmed that Dhesi and Deo were involved in a romantic relationship.
Deo will make his next court appearance on May 27, 2019.
Prior to her death, Dhesi received a kidney transplant after suffering five years with an autoimmune disease known as GPA.
“She went through years of dialysis, numerous surgeries, and complications, but she was so strong and determined to fight,” said Dhesi’s sister Anjali said in 2018.
Richardson reminded the public that the investigation is ongoing and anyone who has additional information is asked to contact the IHIT Information Line at 1-877-551-IHIT (4448), or by email at [email protected].
Those who wish to remain anonymous, can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), or leave a tip online at solvecrime.ca