‘Hubby throttled my lover’

2009-05-22 00:00

GRUESOME details about the murder of Sandesh Pooran, who was strangled and whose body was burned beyond recognition on February 7, emerged in a confession made to a magistrate by his ex-lover and the mother of his child, Kalisha Rajcomar.

She told a magistrate it took about an hour for her husband, Amith Sewkarran, to strangle Pooran while Pooran lay “passed out” naked in bed in The Gables B&B in Scottsville.

Sewkarran had to keep on “switching hands”, she said.

Rajcomar said that afterwards, she could still feel a pulse, so Sewkarran “strangled him with his arm until he died”.

Afterwards, the couple “wiped” the body clean, put his clothes on and Sewkarran carried the body to the car. After stopping at Northway Mall to buy five litres of petrol and charcoal, they drove to Bishopstowe, where Rajcomar alleges Sew­karran doused the body with petrol and set it alight. She said by then she was “breaking down realising what we had done”, and looked away.

Rajcomar denied her story was intended to put herself “in the clear”.

“I could not have carried or choked Sandesh,” she said.

She admitted she is guilty of getting Pooran to The Gables and was part of the plan to kill him. She added she is “very sorry” for what happened.

“I wanted Sandesh to work things out for me and our baby. I wanted my baby to be with him and myself. I did not want a stepdad for my child. Eventually, when Amith came into my life, Sandesh made my life a misery,” she said.

Rajcomar claims in the confession that she led Pooran on in order to stop him harassing her husband and her, but after Sewkarran found out they decided to kill him. She denied she continued a sexual relationship with Pooran.

The confession forms part of the evidence considered by Pietermaritzburg magistrate Raj Dehaloo, who yesterday refused to grant bail to Sewkarran.

The couple are due to appear in court again on June 5 when the state expects to have finalised high court indictments.

Dehaloo ruled that Sewkarran’s release on bail would not be in the interests of justice and said even on his own version — which is contradicted by Rajcomar — he is guilty of being an accessory to Pooran’s murder and is likely to face a prison sentence. “The presumption of innocence therefore falls away,” he said.

Dehaloo said the evidence suggests that the murder was premeditated and well executed, and in his view it seemed clear that Rajcomar and Sewkarran were “in this together”.

Sewkarran claimed in his affidavit at the bail hearing that Rajcomar was the one who strangled Pooran after spiking his drink, and that he [Sewkarran] was coerced into becoming an accessory by helping her to dispose of the body. He maintains that at that stage he acted mechanically, “like a zombie”.

Sewkarran alleges he was expecting to spend the night with his wife at The Gables, but on arrival found Pooran in bed. A crying Rajcomar blurted out: “ I am in big trouble. He is dead,” and then told him what she had done.

ingrido@witness.co.za

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