The suspicious circumstances that led to a car, carrying the bodies of three sisters and their father's first wife, being submerged in the Rideau Canal began to unravel on Thursday, amid allegations of an unfathomable scenario where the girls' parents and brother conspired in a premeditated murder.

Conspiracy charges filed at the Kingston courthouse on Thursday reveal investigators believe plans to commit the murders were hatched as far back as May 1.

The small detail in the indictment added yet another twist in a tragic story that appears to border on the bizarre -- including tearful displays of mourning by those who are now accused of murder, allegations from relatives that it may all have been over honour, and a revelation that the adult initially described as a cousin was actually a first wife.

The bodies of Zainab Shafia, 19, her sisters Sahari, 17, and Geeti, 13, and 50-year-old Rona Amir Mohammad were pulled from a Nissan Sentra on June 30, after the car was discovered in the canal near the Kingston Mills Locks. Police refuse to disclose how they died.

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