05/20/2013 10:51 EDT | Updated 05/20/2013 11:05 EDT

Brad Deering Dead: Canadian Killed In Costa Rica Prompts Travel Warning


The federal government is urging Canadians in or travelling to Costa Rica to be extra cautious after a Vancouver man was killed in an affluent neighbourhood in the Central American country.

Brad Deering, a 42-year-old investor, was shot last week near his home in the suburb Escazu. The city is located just over 12 km southwest of the Costa Rican capital of San Jose and is known as one of the country's upscale neighbourhoods, notes The Globe And Mail.

A report says three gunmen, dressed as security guards, entered his house Thursday and assaulted and tied up Deering, two other men and another woman who were also inside the house.

It's believed that Deering tried to escape and was then shot three times, reports Global News.

Deering's death has prompted a travel warning from Canada, with a post on the website telling travellers that "there is no nationwide advisory for Costa Rica. However, you should exercise a high degree of caution and be vigilant at all times due to increasing levels of violent crime."

Violent crimes such as these are typically uncommon in the neighbourhood of Escazu, according to the Costa Rican Times and the majority of the country is safe for travellers said Diederik Wolsak, a Vancouver native who has run a wellness centre in Costa Rica for seven years.

Violence "can happen… just like Vancouver or anywhere else," Wolsak told CBC, adding that "it seems silly to think the whole country is full of home invaders that kill people."

A private investigator working the case told CTV that there's reason to believe Deering was targeted, possibly for his wealth.

“Three high end cars, all the toys that any nice, wealthy 42-year-old man would want," said Douglas Smith, of the firm Willspy.

“They could have broken into other houses out there, but they zeroed in on his in particular.”

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story stated that Costa Rica belonged in South America. The story has since been updated.

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