'My biggest hope is that she is alive. My greatest fear is that she is not:' Police post $100K reward in Elnaz Hajtamiri abduction
Published Thursday, January 12, 2023 5:30AM EST
Last Updated Thursday, January 12, 2023 3:55PM EST
Police are offering up to a $100,000 reward for anyone with information about the location of an Ontario woman who disappeared a year ago Thursday.
Elnaz Hajtamiri was allegedly kidnapped from a Wasaga Beach, Ont. home and loaded into a white Lexus SUV by three men dressed in fake police gear.
Police released sketches of two of those suspects for the first time on Thursday.
Members of the Ontario Provincial Police provided the update in Mississauga as OPP Det. Insp. Martin Graham underscored that investigators are unsure of Hajtamiri's current condition.
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“My biggest hope is that she is alive. My greatest fear is that she is not," Graham said, adding that he’s never seen a case like this in his 30 years in policing.
Graham said Hajtamiri’s family is “desperate” for answers and hopes the reward, which is being offered by both OPP and York Regional Police, can lead to tips about her whereabouts.
In a statement, Hajtamiri’s mother, Fariba, said her family is suffering and prays that someone with information will come forward.
“Nothing weighs more heavily on our souls than the idea that we may never know what happened to Elnaz. We know there are people out there who have information and who may be contemplating whether to come forward,” the statement reads.
"We pray that you will do the right thing and help us out of this suffering and bring justice for Elnaz. Your immense courage would be for her and for all the countless other women out there."
The month before her abduction, Hajtamiri was allegedly assaulted with a frying pan in an underground parking lot in Richmond Hill, Ont.
Her ex-boyfriend, 35-year-old Mohamad Lilo, has been charged with attempted murder and attempted abduction in connection with that incident. Hajtamiri suffered a head injury and allegedly required roughly 40 stitches to her forehead.
Riyasat Singh, 23, of Mississauga and Harshdeep Binner, 24, of Brampton, who was wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, were also arrested and charged in that attack.
Lilo was also charged with abduction following Hajtamiri’s 2022 disappearance, but police are still looking for three more suspects
According to Hajtamiri’s sister, Aysa, police had told Hajtamiri to relocate temporarily after allegedly receiving threats from her ex-boyfriend, which was why she was living in a relative's home in Wasaga Beach at the time of her alleged kidnapping.
Police are asking anyone with information related to the investigation to call the OPP non-emergency line at 1-888-310-1122.
Alternatively, anyone who wishes to submit a tip anonymously can do so through Crime Stoppers at ontariocrimestoppers.ca or 1-800- 222-8477 (TIPS).
“Members of the public are strongly urged to help share previously released social media information and photos of Elnaz HAJTAMIRI using the hashtag #BringElnazHome,” police said in a news release.