Murder-suicide suspected after billionaire, wife found dead in mansion
The bodies of a Canadian billionaire and his wife were found hanging side-by-side in their lavish Toronto mansion — and investigators are treating the case as a possible murder-suicide.
Investigators believe philanthropist and pharmaceutical mogul Barry Sherman killed his wife, Honey, hung her body, and then took his own life, a police source told the Globe and Mail.
Their bodies were discovered Friday by the couple’s real-estate agent, who went to the home after she’d been unable to reach them to make an appointment to show the home.
Both were hanging from a railing that surrounds the lap pool in the basement of the home, which was listed for sale at $5.4 million, the outlet reported.
The sprawling home featured a second, outdoor swimming pool, five bedrooms, nine bathrooms, tennis courts and space for 14 cars.
There was no sign of forced entry, no sign of anyone else having been in the house, and no note left behind to explain the deaths, police sources told the Canadian press.
An initial investigation has revealed that Honey was killed in a different location, then moved to the basement pool, police sources told the Toronto Sun.
The couple, who had four grown children and had just welcomed a new grandchild, appeared to enjoy an abundance of good fortune.
Barry, 75, founded the generic drug company Apotex, and was worth about $3.65 billion, making him the 15th richest person in Canada, according to Forbes.
He was an active fundraiser for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party.
Honey, 70, had earlier in the week e-mailed friends to let them know about an upcoming trip the couple was planning to the Sunshine State, the Globe and Mail wrote.
“I am coming south Monday, December 18 – Friday, January 12,” she wrote. “Barry is coming south for Monday, December 25 & going home with me Jan. 12 … Looking forward to hearing back asap. Xoxo Honey.”
The couple was known for their philanthropy, and had given away millions of dollars to hospitals, universities and other causes.
They made donations of $39 million to the United Jewish Appeal.
Just two weeks ago, Honey was honored in the Canadian Senate for her generosity to Canada’s Jewish community.
But Barry had recently come under criticism by watchdog groups for being a registered lobbyist at the same time he hosted a 2015 pay-for-access political fundraiser for Trudeau.
As recently as September, Canadian federal-court investigators were probing whether Barry had violated national lobbying rules by hosting that event, and a second, in November 2016, for Finance Minister Bill Morneau.
“Sophie and I are saddened by news of the sudden passing of Barry and Honey Sherman,” Trudeau wrote on Twitter.
“Our condolences to their family & friends, and to everyone touched by their vision & spirit.”
Barry was also embroiled in a long-running dispute with cousins who claimed they were robbed of their inheritance back in 1974, when Barry sold his first pharmaceuticals business, Empire Laboratory, originally owned by his uncle.
The feud has spanned nearly half a century.
And while Barry recently won a court victory in the case, the cousins had said they would appeal.
With Post wires