Victim identified in deadly East Vancouver sword attack

A man killed with a sword in a targeted attack in east Vancouver Wednesday night was 19-year-old Manraj Akalirai, the CBC has learned.

Akalirai was attacked by a large group on Elgin Street near East 47th Avenue, just south of Memorial South Park, at about 10:30 p.m. PT, police said. Several weapons were used in the attack, including bats, clubs and a sword.

Police said the sword hasn't been recovered, but they've determined it was the weapon that killed Akalirai because of the nature of his injuries and a scabbard found on scene.

Five men aged between 19 and 21 were arrested in connection with the attack. Two have since been released. No charges have been laid.

Police said four of the five suspects were arrested at Vancouver General Hospital, where one suspect was treated for injuries.

A vehicle was also seized at the hospital, along with another from East 41st Avenue and Ross Street.

Investigators said Akalirai did not have a criminal record. He recently graduated from Gladstone High School.

Police believe the fight originated in the house next door to the yard where Akalirai was found.

It is thought the attack was drug-related and may have had a loose gang connection.

The incident was the city’s first homicide of 2013.

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