Oliver, B.C., man charged with first-degree murder of Belgian tourist

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      RCMP have charged a B.C. man with the murder of a Belgian female tourist.

      The Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) announced today (September 17) that Sean McKenzie, a 27-year-old man from Oliver, B.C., has been charged with the first-degree murder of 28-year-old Amélie Christelle Sakkalis.

      IHIT identified Sakkalis on September 5 as a Belgian national who was traveling in Canada. Her body was found around 7:45 p.m. on August 22 north of the B.C. town of Boston Bar (located about 65 kilometres away from Hope, B.C.) near Highway 1. She had been hitchhiking from Penticton to Vancouver.

      Amélie Christelle Sakkalis
      B.C. RCMP

      McKenzie had been taken into custody at the scene on August 22 but was later released.

      A white 1994 Chevrolet Astro van near the crime scene, believed to be related to the murder, was also seized by RCMP.

      RCMP released these photos of this vehicle of interest that was found north of Boston Bar, B.C.
      B.C. RCMP

      McKenzie was arrested and charged on September 14 and will appear in B.C. Provincial Court on September 19. 

      Sakkalis' family in Belgium has been notified of the developments in the case. 

      Anyone who saw Sakkalis with McKenzie on August 22 is asked to call is asked to call the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team information line at 1-877-551-4448 or by email. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

      Sean McKenzie
      B.C. RCMP
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