Kamloops lawyer accused in murder of TRU professor remains in jail awaiting bail hearing

Bagabuyo still in jail

A Kamloops lawyer accused of murdering a TRU faculty member last year remains behind bars, with a bail hearing expected to be set in the coming days.

Butch Bagabuyo, 55, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Mohd Abdullah. He is also charged with one count of offering an indignity to human remains, accused of placing Abdullah’s body in a plastic bin.

Abdullah, a longtime instructor in the computer sciences program at TRU, was reported missing on March 11, 2022. His body was found six days later inside a rental van parked on a cul de sac in Dufferin.

Bagabuyo was arrested around the same time, charged with indignity to human remains and then released on $10,000 bail. Details of the allegations against him are protected by a court-ordered publication ban.

He was re-arrested on May 12 and has been in custody since.

During a brief hearing Monday in Kamloops provincial court, defence lawyer Faisal Alamy said Bagabuyo’s bail application will be filed soon, setting the stage for a bail hearing in B.C. Supreme Court.

Bagabuyo’s next appearance in provincial court is set for June 21.

He is slated to stand trial next month in B.C. Supreme Court on the indignity charge. It is not yet known whether that trial will proceed on its own or be rolled into the murder prosecution.

Abdullah, who also worked as a pilates and yoga instructor in the city, was remembered by TRU colleagues as being a quiet and kind man.

Last year, then-RCMP Supt. Syd Lecky said the probe of Abdullah’s slaying was complex and an “unprecedented” investigation for local police. He said the RCMP’s provincial office hired and paid for a judicial referee to assist with the probe given Bagabuyo’s line of work.

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