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New trial date set for man accused of killing B.C. teen Marissa Shen


A new trial date has been set for a man accused of killing a 13-year-old girl in Burnaby nearly six years ago.

Marissa Shen was last seen alive on July 18, 2017, at a local Tim Hortons. Five hours after that sighting, her body was found in Burnaby's Central Park.

Ibrahim Ali was arrested more than a year later and charged with first-degree murder.

The trial had already been postponed twice by the time it was slated to begin in January, only to be rescheduled once more due to a large number of pre-trial applications, according to the B.C. Prosecution Service.

However, jury selection is now underway at B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver, and the BCPS confirmed that the trial is scheduled to begin on April 5.

B.C.'s Integrated Homicide Investigation Team has described the case as the biggest it has worked on in its history.

According to the RCMP, there were initially 2,000 persons of interest in the case, and Ali did not become a suspect until two weeks before his arrest.

Police have not revealed what evidence put him on their radar.

Ali, a Syrian national who arrived in Canada just a few months before the killing, was 28 years old at the time of Shen's death and has no previous criminal record.

Heated protests have erupted outside the court house during a number of his previous court appearances, with some individuals seemingly focused on turning Shen’s death into a larger debate about Canada’s immigration system. 

Ali has been in Custody since his arrest in 2018.

The trial is expected to run through to June 30.

With files from CTV Vancouver’s Lisa Steacy. Top Stories

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