Charges laid for fire that razed Coptic Orthodox Church


2021-08-30 16:00 PDT

File # 2021-107783 / 105016

Surrey RCMP is updating the public on the investigation into a fire that destroyed the St. George Coptic Orthodox Church, in Whalley.

The St. George church was the target of two incidents of arson, the first on July 14, the second on July 19, 2021, that destroyed the church. (See previous news release.)

Following an investigation by the Surrey RCMP Major Crime Section, a 35-year old woman was arrested on August 26, 2021.

Kathleen Panek of no fixed address has now been charged with two counts of arson in connection with the incidents on July 14, and July 19, 2021.

The loss of the St. George Coptic Orthodox Church has had a significant impact on members of that congregation and the greater community, says Sergeant Elenore Sturko. We hope that this announcement of an arrest and charges will bring some comfort to those who were impacted.


Released by

Sgt. Elenore Sturko

Media Relations Officer
Surrey RCMP
14355 57 Avenue, Surrey, BC, V3X 1A9
Office: 604-599-7776


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