'Beaten almost beyond recognition'

Mr. Koutroubis, a graduate in business studies, had no known criminal history. But a theory police have been exploring from the outset is that along with business interests encompassing part-time ownership of an elegant downtown restaurant, a United Parcel Service franchise…

The Globe and Mail
February 24, 2009

'Beaten almost beyond recognition'
Search for missing Toronto restaurateur ends with grisly discovery in BMW
Timothy Appleby

TheUPSStoreGeorgeKoutroubis.jpg

Bill Koutroubis, second from left, is greeted yesterday by a supporter outside Six Steps restaurant, which was owned by his brother, George Koutroubis, above, who was found dead Sunday. Kevin van Paasen/The Globe and Mail

Whoever killed George Koutroubis ensured the Toronto businessman's demise was painful and thorough: A source familiar with Peel Region's third homicide investigation of the year said Mr. Koutroubis was "beaten almost beyond recognition."

A Peel police officer located Mr. Koutroubis's body on Sunday afternoon, concealed inside his luxury sport-utility vehicle in a Brampton parking lot where the car had sat for days. Responding to a tip, detectives in Toronto who had been seeking Mr. Koutroubis specifically asked that the area around Steeles Avenue and Hurontario Street be checked for his brand-new black BMW X5.

The vehicle's 36-year-old owner was not behind the wheel. Police don't believe Mr. Koutroubis drove the car to Brampton, Inspector Norm English of the Peel homicide squad told a news conference yesterday.

Rather, it appears Mr. Koutroubis was killed elsewhere, possibly in Whitby, east of Toronto, where he had apparently arranged a business meeting on the day he vanished, and that he and his car were brought to Brampton and dumped outside a high-rise apartment block.

No suspects have been identified and no arrest warrants issued. Complicating the investigation is the fact that the recently married Mr. Koutroubis, a graduate in business studies, had no known criminal history.

But a theory police have been exploring from the outset is that along with business interests encompassing part-time ownership of an elegant downtown restaurant, a United Parcel Service franchise and several rental properties, Mr. Koutroubis worked as a bookie, expediting sports bets.

Insp. English declined to say if gambling played a role in his death.

"At this stage, I am not prepared to comment on that aspect," he said.

He would not disclose how Mr. Koutroubis died.

But what's clear is that his death was exceptionally violent. At the victim's Six Steps restaurant near Church and King Streets yesterday, the mood was bleak.

A sign on the front door said the place was closed, and some hard-faced men on the front steps kept the media at bay. But inside was a busy but subdued lunchtime crowd.

Dozens of well-dressed men stood around the bar, watching a flat-screen television showing news clips about the proprietor's disappearance, now a murder investigation.

A reporter was politely but firmly asked to leave, "out of respect for the family."

Mr. Koutroubis was a well-liked, industrious BlackBerry aficionado with many friends and business associates. On Thursday of last week - two days after he disappeared - he was supposed to have embarked on a Caribbean honeymoon cruise with his wife of two months, Rhoda. The couple had no children

He had not been heard from since last Tuesday afternoon, when his usual torrent of e-mails and cellphone calls suddenly ceased. As he sped east along Highway 401, he telephoned a friend to say he was heading to a meeting in Whitby, and shortly before 5 p.m. he made what was probably the last call of his life.

"I'm sitting here waiting for someone to show up," he said.

Detectives believe Mr. Koutroubis's BMW had been in the Brampton parking lot since Wednesday or even Tuesday of last week, but would not say where in the car his body was, or how it had been hidden.

"We're only prepared to commit to the fact that he was driven there," said Constable Adam Minnion of Peel Regional Police. "We're appealing for witnesses, or anonymous tips


Brought to you by WikidFranchise.org

Risks: Infamous trademark system, Murder, Violence, Canada, 20090224 Beaten almost

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License