Missing Toronto woman’s boyfriend kills self in Turkey

A man suspected in the murder of his American wife and the disappearance of his Canadian girlfriend a year ago apparently committed suicide in his Turkish hometown.

Toronto police are waiting for Interpol to confirm Turkish reports that Riza Cosa, 29, jumped from the ninth floor of a building in Sivas last week. An international search for Cosa began after his wife, Winsome Angela Perez, 45, was found stuffed in a bag in a New York steel factory where he had worked.

Toronto police suspect foul play in the June 2009 disappearance of Hatice Corbacioglu, 33, after she drove to New York to visit Cosa, a Turkish refugee working as a welder.

On June 30 Cosa took a one-way flight to Turkey before Perez’s body was found. Corbacioglu’s car was abandoned at the John F. Kennedy Airport. She stopped answering her cellphone and her bank account has gone untouched.

Corbacioglu met Cosa at a party in New York in December 2008. She soon told her family and friends he was the man of her dreams.

Hasan Yilmaz, editor of Canadaturk newspaper, a Toronto Turkish language publication, says Turkish authorities confirmed an autopsy was performed and Cosa was buried in his family’s plot in Sivas. He also said there are (unconfirmed) reports in Turkish papers that Corbacioglu was seen in the country.

Toronto police have doubts she ever left New York.

“Turkey has no record of her legal entry into the country. Her country of origin is Turkey and she could easily enter using her proper identification. She’s got a Canadian passport, so there’s no reason why she would have to (enter Turkey illegally),” said Det. Stacey Davis.

Hasan said Cosa left a suicide note saying the biggest mistake he’d ever made was falling in love with a Canadian woman, Corbacioglu. The two had planned to marry and Corbacioglu’s friends say she knew of her boyfriend’s wife, but was under the impression they were getting divorced.

After Corbacioglu went missing, her family spoke with Cosa by phone several times. But his story was always changing. One week, he’d tell them Corbacioglu was visiting his family in Turkey. Another week, she was off in southern Arabia. Whatever the case, she was never able to talk to her family and Cosa stopped communicating with them.

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