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Quebec man charged in abduction, Richmond Hill woman still missing

'Our ultimate goal is to find Elnaz and bring her home to her family,' OPP says six months after the 37-year-old's abduction
Richmond Hill resident Elnaz Hajtamiri was abducted from a home in Wasaga Beach on Jan. 12, 2022 at 8:30 p.m.

Provincial police have laid charges in connection with the abduction of a woman from a Wasaga Beach home six months ago.

On the evening of Jan. 12, 37-year-old Elnaz Hajtamiri was abducted by three men described as Black who were impersonating police officers. They charged into the home where she was staying, grabbed her, dragged her outside, put her in a white SUV, and then drove away with her in the back seat. 

She remains missing, but on Wednesday  the day marking six months since her disappearance  OPP announced that Mohamad Lilo, 35, of Brossard, Que., has been charged with kidnapping in connection with the Wasaga Beach incident.

He is also charged with attempted murder and attempted kidnapping in relation to the attack on Hajtamiri in Richmond Hill in December 2021. He is expected to appear at the Ontario Court of Justice in Barrie on Wednesday.

Lilo was earlier described by a Toronto lawyer hired by Hajtamiri’s family as being her ex-boyfriend.

“We still don’t know the whereabouts of Elnaz Hajtamiri,” said OPP acting media relations manager Bill Dickson. “Our ultimate goal is to find Elnaz and bring her home to her family."

Family members in Iran are desperate and in April reached out to the public pleading for help.

During an April 12 news conference police and Hajtamiri’s family appealed to Farsi- and Arabic-speaking communities to share any information that would help find her. 

But just what happened to the woman abducted from the Wasaga Beach home and where she is now remains the focus of investigators.

There have been no ransom demands made, and nothing to point to a motive or reason for her abduction.

Even the white SUV, believed to be a Lexus RC350, used during the abduction in Wasaga Beach has not been located.

In the months prior to her disappearance, Hajtamiri had already been exposed to violence. The previous Dec. 20 she was attacked in a parking garage at her home in Richmond Hill on King William Crescent. She was beaten over the head with a frying pan before her attackers fled in a stolen vehicle, which was later recovered. Hajtamiri was taken to hospital and received stitches for a gash on her forehead.

The vehicle used during the assault was later found by police. It had been stolen the night before in North York.

GPS tracking devices were also discovered in Hajtamiri’s personal vehicle around that time.

Police believe the attack and the abduction are linked.

Investigators believe the people involved in the assault were either involved in the abduction or can identify the people who abducted her.

Nine days after her abduction, police arrested one person for assault in Wasaga Beach, whom OPP confirm was known to Hajtamiri, and had a relationship with her.

Hajtamiri, who emigrated from Iran to Canada less than four years ago and also goes by the surname Tamiri, stands about five-foot-three, has a slim build, with shoulder-length black hair, but it was cut a little shorter before her abduction.