Niagara couple indicted in $9M tax fraud carry out suicide pact

Maryanne Firth, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:58 AM ET

PELHAM, Ont. - The two bodies found behind a Pelham home Tuesday are those of a local couple who were indicted in the U.S. in a $9 million tax fraud scam and the result of a "suicide pact," police said.

Niagara Regional Police confirmed Wednesday the two are Brock University Prof. Jonathan Neufeld, 59, and his wife, Christina Starkbaum, 57, who lived together at 1190 Centre St.

Their bodies were discovered in a wooded area behind their Niagara Region home.

“Niagara Regional Police do not believe these deaths are suspicious, however, they are the result of a suicide pact,” Const. Derek Watson said.

On Sept. 5, a federal grand jury in Rochester, N.Y., returned a 19-count indictment charging seven Canadians, including Neufeld and Starkbaum, in an alleged $9 million tax fraud scheme.


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