Police in Mexico are investigating the death of a suspect in the killing of Hamilton mobster Angelo Musitano as a murder.
The RCMP liaison in Mexico is working with authorities there on the death of Michael Graham Cudmore, according to Det. Sgt. Peter Thom of Hamilton Police Service.
"All I know is it has been classified as a homicide investigation," Thom told CBC News.
"If you're running in those circles, there's always the danger of this type of thing happening."
Cudmore, who had links to Hamilton- and Toronto-area organized crime, according to police, was found dead in a ditched car on the side of a road in rural Mexico at the end of June.
He left Canada in May 2017 — the same month Musitano was shot and killed in the driveway of his Waterdown, Ont., home.
He was later named by investigators as one of three men "directly involved" in the killing, and that of a Vaughan, Ont., woman earlier that year.
Mila Barberi was shot dead in March 2017 while she sat in an SUV parked outside a business in an industrial area north of Toronto. She was picking up her boyfriend, Saverio Serrano, who police say had connections to organized crime and may have been the intended target.
Thom, who is closely involved in the Musitano case, says he isn't sure how Cudmore's apparent killing translates into Canada's mob scene.
"He's been gone for a good couple of years and I don't know what his lifestyle was like down there. I really don't have much information to go on at the moment," Thom said.
Mafia expert and author Antonio Nicaso recently told CBC News that, in general, those who hire an external hitman, as Cudmore is thought to have been, would worry about them being arrested and sharing information with police.
"The idea of being disposed by the same people who hired them is a possible option," Nicaso said.
"I have a hard time thinking about a possible revenge by the Musitanos in Mexico. They have a hard time striking back locally in Canada. Can you imagine Mexico?"
Another option is Cudmore ran into a cartel or other powerful group in Mexico. While Nicaso can't be certain, he says the chances of Cudmore's death being a catalyst for more violence is low.
Suspect still at large
With Cudmore dead, there are two remaining suspects in the killings of Barberi and Musitano and the attempted murder of Serrano.
One was arrested in September 2018 and, this month, Jabril Abdalla was committed to trial after a preliminary hearing. His trial date hasn't been set.
The other, Daniel Tomassetti, is still wanted for both murders and his arrest warrant remains on file with Interpol.
He fled to Mexico in January 2018 and has not returned to Canada. Police say his family doesn't know where he is but know "he is scared."
Thom says he believes Tomassetti is alive.
"If we could get Mr. Tomassetti back and have him and Mr. Abdalla sit through the same trial, that would obviously be a preference," he previously said.
"If Abdalla's court case is finished before Tomassetti is located or faces trial, we'll have to go through another court case."