CANADA The Supreme Court will not hear the case of...

The Supreme Court will not hear the case of the dismembered inheritance of a multimillionaire


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Seven years after Gan Yuan’s dismembered body was found in his West Vancouver home, his estate is still unoccupied. (Filed)

WARNING: This story contains graphic details.

When Chinese-born West Vancouver multimillionaire Gan Yuan was beaten with a hammer, shot twice, and hacked into 108 pieces in 2015, the simplest part of the story ended with a conviction for manslaughter, but the fate of Yuan’s fortune remained the same. very unclear.

Now the Supreme Court of Canada has refused to hear an appeal by a woman whose identity is protected by the injunction but who is described as Mother 1, the first of five women who had a child with Yuan and who claims to be his wife.

The rejection of Thursday’s application for leave to appeal ended Mother 1’s lengthy legal battle to declare him consort, which, since Yuan died intestate, would have entitle her to half of his $7 million to $21 million estate, at the time. how Canadian law would divide the rest. among his five children.

The British Columbia Court of Appeal upheld the lower court’s decision and dismissed Mother 1’s spousal lawsuit last December, finding no “marital relationship” between her and Yuan, although they dated before Yuan came to Canada and he supported her. in China. where she lived with his parents and took care of them.

As usual, Canada’s highest court did not base its decision on Mother 1’s application.

The estate dispute gained wide publicity due to Yuan’s untimely and bloody death at the hands of Li Zhao’s once beloved business partner.

West Vancouver police and homicide investigators examine a crime scene after the discovery of Gan Yuan’s dismembered body in May 2015. (SHS)

Court documents from Zhao’s 2020 British Columbia Supreme Court trial show that he disapproved of Yuan’s playboy lifestyle and treatment of women.

On May 2, 2015, the two got into a violent fight after Zhao believed that Yuan first made disparaging remarks about Zhao’s invention and then aggravated the crime by offering to marry Zhao’s favorite and only daughter as part of the price of financing the invention.

The documents detailed a violent and protracted fight between the two men that only ended on their driveway when Zhao, who told investigators he feared “life was in danger,” fired two shots at close range from a rifle used primarily for shooting rabbits. .

Yuan was shot in the neck and died in the driveway.

In finding Zhao guilty of manslaughter, British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Terence Schultz said in an oral ruling in October 2020 that that’s when things got “undoubtedly weird.”

Police at the house where the body was found (SHS)

Zhao attempted to dispose of the body by using power tools to cut it into what the ruling describes as “108 separate fragments.”

The 55-year-old even explained his gruesome job in the home’s garage by agreeing with a passing family nanny that he was out hunting and “hunting a bear.”

Zhao had previously ordered his wife and elderly mother-in-law to leave the scene, but they eventually asked a family friend to help them call the police, and Zhao was arrested at his home the next morning and charged with second-degree murder.

Schultz ruled that the Crown had failed to prove the necessary intent to convict on this charge and found Zhao guilty of manslaughter and tampering with human remains, sentencing him to 10 years and six months on two counts.

Because Zhao never asked for bail pending trial, and the case was extended due to delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the almost two-year-old sentence was reduced to reflect the pre-trial detention credit, as a result resulting in a total remaining period of two years. , four months and eight days for killing Yuan.

If Zhao does not seek early release, he will serve his entire sentence by early 2023.

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