Selva Kumar Subbiah, 56, arrived in Canada to attend university in 1980. He would frequently pose as a modeling scout or movie talent agent. Other schemes included luring women to his home through ads offering to sell exotic pets, or posing as a lawyer, diplomat, or dancer.
He would offer women a drugged beverage, and then rape and take photos of them while they were unconscious. One victim, who wished to remain anonymous, said of Subbiah that he was "smooth, well-practiced… he was practiced already, in '84 or '85."
His crime streak ended August 1991, when he was captured by police. He was charged with 30 instances of drugging and sexually assaulting women, but there could be hundreds more victims not known to police.
Police found in Subbiah's apartment a black book with the names of 170 women, each rated from 0-10. Hundreds of other women were identified as possible victims based on photos and journals among Subbiah's possessions. "As many as 500 to 1,000 could have been attacked," said Naima Karimullah, a lawyer for the Canada Border Services Agency.
In 1992, Subbiah was convicted of 19 counts of sexual assault, 28 counts of administering a drug or noxious substance, 10 counts of assault and numerous other charges. The youngest of his victims was 14 at the time.
"It seems like he has just coloured my view of people," said another anonymous woman to The Star. "I just have more fear. You just feel like nothing's safe. It's weird."
"He has no feelings, no compassion. All we can do is warehouse him," said prosecutor Paul Normandeau during Subbiah's release hearing.
During his prison stay, Subbiah was declared ineligible for refugee status in 1994 or for parole in 2016, as he was considered a "danger to the public," likely to cause "death or serious harm to another person." He also appeared in the news in 1998 when he was found to be running a series of cons to have women send him nude photographs and gifts from his prison cell.
A 2014 parole board described Subbiah as feeling "superficial remorse" and "need for control… and self-gratification." They described him as having a high potential to reoffend, and subsequently denied him any parole.
"He is a prolific psychopath who should be kept behind bars for the rest of his life," said Brian Thomson, one of the officers who investigated and arrested Subbiah.
Subbiah unsuccessfully petitioned to have The Star refrain from photographing him or reporting on his hearing, justifying his actions by claiming that he feared the information might cost him his safety. The Star replied that it would prioritize the wishes of Subbiah's victims over his.
"I believe the Malaysia public should be fully aware," said one victim. "Every border should have his picture."
Malaysian officials have accepted Subbiah's return, despite his protests that he will face discrimination there due to his Jewish faith. It is unclear what will happen to him when he returns.
However, Subbiah later changed his mind. "I'm ready to leave, sir," he said to Justice Andrew Laut of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.
Some victims celebrated Subbiah's deportation. "It's still sort of a presence," she said. "Maybe the day after he's finally gone, I'll maybe celebrate with a glass of wine."