Bail denied for Toronto neurosurgeon accused of killing his doctor wife

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A judge has denied bail for Mohammed Shamji, the Toronto neurosurgeon accused of murdering his physician wife.

Justice Michael Brown handed down the decision in a Toronto courtroom Wednesday afternoon.

Last week, Shamji appeared at the courthouse at 361 University Ave., along with his lawyers, for a bail review. The details of the proceedings are under a publication ban.

The 40-year-old neurosurgeon has been in custody since his arrest in December on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of his wife, Elana Fric, a Scarborough-based family physician and mother of the couple’s three children.

Her body was discovered in a suitcase near an underpass in Vaughan, Ont. She died from strangulation and blunt-force trauma.

If Shamji had been granted bail, he would have been unable to return to neurosurgery because he is no longer licensed in Ontario, according to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.

Mohammed Shamji

Mohammed Shamji (far left) during his August 24 court appearance at Toronto’s Old City Hall. Shamji was at the courthouse with his lawyer seeking bail. (Pam Davies/CBC)

Shamji not permitted to practice medicine ‘in any capacity’

That would have included consulting on cases.

Shamji was an assistant professor of surgery at the University of Toronto and a staff neurosurgeon with Toronto Western Hospital. Following his arrest, the University Health Network notified the CPSO that his privileges were suspended, effective Dec. 5, 2016.

Then, on Aug. 10 of this year, his registration with the CPSO expired.

Should Shamji ever wish to practice again, he would have to apply for a license and meet all current registration requirements, Clarke said, including that his conduct shows he is “mentally competent to practice medicine” and that he would practice with “decency, integrity and honesty and in accordance with the law.”

Fric met Shamji during her medical school days at the University of Ottawa while he was there for a neurosurgery residency.

Fric’s death and her husband’s arrest — which rocked Ontario’s medical community and sparked discussions of domestic violence — is not Shamji’s first brush with the law.

As CBC Toronto previously reported, he was charged with one count of assault and two counts of uttering death threats in 2005, and Fric was the complainant.

In July of that year, the crown agreed to withdraw the charges in return for a peace bond.


Bail denied for Toronto neurosurgeon accused of killing his doctor wife

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