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High Court In Suva Howell Road Murder Trial Begins

High Court In Suva Howell Road Murder Trial Begins
Murder accused Imshad Ali who is alleged to have killed his 34-year-old de facto partner in Howell Road.
May 24
12:25 2018


The fate that Rajeshni Deo Sharma encountered on November 1, 2009 in their Samabula home was one that she never planned for.

These were the words of Director of Public Prosecutions lawyer Meli Vosawale while giving his opening address to the three assessors in a murder trial yesterday.

Standing trial is 38-year-old murder accused Imshad Ali who is alleged to have killed his 34-year-old de facto partner Ms Sharma in Howell Road.

Ms Sharma was employed as a Kindergarten Teacher when the alleged incident happened.

In his address Mr Vosawale said the accused hit Ms Sharma on the head before strangling her to death.

“And if that was not enough he ransacked their property and made it look as if someone other than himself had done it,” Mr Vosawale said.

He said the couple had been living together for some time.

The Prosecution will call eye witnesses to give their recollection of what allegedly transpired on that day.

They are also expected to call the evidence of two doctors, Police officers, produce circumstantial evidence and also tend the accused’s caution interview as evidence.

The first witness to give evidence yesterday was a 60-year-old crime officer Maha Ram who led the murder investigation.

Mr Ram said he was based at the Samabula Police Station in 2009 when he was informed that a report had been lodged about a body found in a home in Samabula.

He said the accused reported the matter to the Police on November 3, 2009 and at first they treated him as a complainant.

Mr Ram testified that after he received word about the murder he immediately went to the crime scene.

He said when he arrived at the scene he saw the accused outside the house in a corner while senior crime officers went about conducting their investigations.

He later described how he saw the accused sitting down with his face buried in his hands and after a while quietly watched what was going on around him.

Mr Ram said he entered the house through the back door and noticed the kitchen was scattered and there were blood stains on the floor.

He said he saw a female lying on the floor facing upwards with blood stains.

Then he exited the house and immediately formed a team to proceed with investigations starting with conducting house to house interviews with the neighbours.

Mr Ram told the Court that he noticed there were no signs of forced entry into the house and the front and side gates were intact including the grilled door which was not locked but half closed.

He said during their house to house interviews they asked neighbours if they saw any intruder or anybody entering the compound and if they heard anything unusual coming from the house.

Mr Ram said the neighbours saw no one going into the compound nor did they see anyone jumping over the fence.

He said the accused was brought in for questioning on November 12, 2009 from Safs Tourist Apartments after suspicions arose during investigations that there were no signs of a break-in in the house and no one else was inside the house except the accused.

The trial continues before Justice Vinsent Perera in the High Court today.

The accused is in remand and is represented by defence lawyer Abhay Singh.

Edited by Mohammed Zulfikar

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