On the morning of June 30, 2009, police in Kingston, Ontario, made a ghastly discovery: four females dead in a car submerged in a shallow canal. Sisters Zainab Shafia, 19, Sahar Shafia, 17, Geeti Shafia, 13, along with Rona Mohammad Amir, 50, floated almost serenely inside the car, seemingly the victims of a terrible accident. That morning, Mohammad Shafia, his wife Tooba and their son, Hamed, arrived at the Kingston police station to report the four missing. In a sweeping covert investigation that spanned three continents, police uncovered layers of lies in the Shafias’ story and they developed a horrifying theory: Zainab, Sahar, Geeti and Rona had been the victims of a meticulously plotted family murder – Canada’s first mass honour killing.
In Without Honour, award-winning journalist Rob Tripp draws on three years of exhaustive research and exclusive interviews to make sense of a senseless crime in a way no other writer could. He uses his unprecedented access to tell a story beyond anything the jury heard: a story about a patriarch who fled war and strife in Afghanistan but who did not leave behind his devotion to repressive tradition. Tripp was the first journalist on the scene as the news broke and the only reporter to attend every day of court sessions, through to the convictions of Shafia, Tooba and Hamed on four counts each of first-degree murder. The Shafias are appealing.
In this gripping and compassionate account, Tripp reveals the heartbreaking and stunning truth about these crimes fuelled by what Ontario Superior Court Judge Robert Maranger called a “twisted notion of honour,” and about the desperate lives of four women who died in the pursuit of freedom.
About the author
ROB TRIPP is an award-winning investigative reporter who has been covering crime for more than 25 years. He has worked for CBC Radio, the Toronto Star, the National Post, the Montreal Gazette, and the Kingston Whig Standard, among other papers. A regular commentator on crime and justice issues for national media, Tripp has won a National Newspaper Award and has been nominated five more times, including twice for his coverage of the Shafia case. Formerly a resident of Kingston, he now lives with his family in Calgary. Visit him online at cancrime.com or on Twitter @cancrime.