2 Charged in Murder of Canadian Entrepreneur and His Partner

Daniel Langlois, Dominique Marchand believed to have been ambushed in car
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 5, 2023 2:00 AM CST
Updated Dec 7, 2023 1:00 AM CST
Canadian Entrepreneur, Philanthropist Found Dead Along With His Partner
Stock photo.   (Getty Images / Daniel Tadevosyan)
UPDATE Dec 7, 2023 1:00 AM CST

Two Americans, Jonathan Lehrer and Robert Snider, have been charged with murdering Daniel Langlois and Dominique Marchand, the Canadian entrepreneur and his partner found dead in a burned-out car last week in Dominica. Lehrer owns property adjacent to the eco-resort owned by Langlois and Marchand, and had been involved in a dispute with Langlois over a public road that intersected Lehrer's property, and which Lehrer allegedly blocked with boulders and a trench. Langlois sued, and in 2019 a judge ordered Lehrer to open the road and allow guests of Langlois' resort to use it, the BBC reports. Lehrer's wife and a Dominican man were also originally detained, but only Lehrer and Snider, described as his accomplice, were charged, Dominica News Online reports.

Dec 5, 2023 2:00 AM CST

A Canadian entrepreneur and philanthropist and his partner were found dead Friday in the Caribbean island nation of Dominica, where the couple ran an eco-friendly resort, and four people of interest have been detained for questioning in their deaths. The bodies of Daniel Langlois and Dominique Marchand were found in a burned-out car at the bottom of a ravine near their resort; police believe they were ambushed and shot on the road before their car went into the ravine and burst into flames, the Guardian reports. Three foreigners and one Dominican national were detained; one of them is an American citizen, the BBC reports. Langlois and Marchand had been reported missing before they were found dead.

Langlois, of Quebec, started Softimage, a company that made 3D technology used for special effects in movies including Jurassic Park, Titanic, and The Matrix, as well as the Star Wars and Lord of the Rings franchises. It was later acquired by Microsoft, the Toronto Star reports. He later launched a philanthropic organization as well as a humanitarian organization to help Dominica, where his Coulibri Ridge resort is located, after Hurricane Maria; he first came to the island nation in 1997.

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One of the people taken into custody is Jonathan Lehrer, the owner of a nearby resort with whom Langlois was engaged in a legal dispute a few years ago, CTV News reports. The CBC reports the dispute involved Langlois using a public road that ran through Lehrer's estate, and says Langlois took Lehrer to court over the matter. (More Dominica stories.)

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