Chatsworth dad gets 3 life sentences for bludgeoning family to death

2017-02-28 18:31

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Durban - Chatsworth dad Mogamberry Kandasamy, 48, has been sentenced to three life sentences for bludgeoning his wife and teenage children to death with two "religious maces" at their family home in late December 2013.

Durban High Court Judge Shyam Gyanda on Monday rejected Kandasamy’s defence that, if he had done it, he could remember nothing of that night.

The judge pointed to the fact that when he was approached by the police - who were looking for him because they feared he too may have been a victim of what could have been a violent house robbery - he had admitted to the murders.

He subsequently made a confession and, although during the trial he challenged the admissibility of this, the Judge ruled that it could be used in evidence against him.

The State, in its indictment, alleged that Kandasamy and his wife Versha - who was known as Mala - were having marital problems at the time.

They had gone out that evening.

When they returned, Mala went to bed.

Kandasamy armed himself with the two wooden maces and struck her repeatedly on her head.

He turned on his children - Melarisa, who was 18 and had just matriculated, and his son Megandran, who was 16 - when they came into the room to investigate.

Kandasamy, who worked at the local Checkers at the time, then fled the scene.

'Loving family man'

The three bodies were discovered the following day by a neighbour who entered the locked house by climbing through a window after being alerted by concerned relatives.

Handing down judgment, Judge Gyanda said claims by Kandasamy that he could not remember and that his family had been killed by robbers could not be true.

Kandasamy was convicted of all three murders.

In mitigation of sentence, Kandasamy’s attorney Siven Samuel submitted that Kandasamy had been a loving family man who had lost the three people he loved most.

While he accepted that his client must go to jail, he argued that he should not be sent away for life and that he needed a release date as "something to strive toward".

State Advocate Bonga Mbokazi said Kandasamy had robbed himself of his family and them of their futures.

Domestic violence was rife, he said, and could not be tolerated.

Judge Gyanda agreed and noted that this was the third case of domestic violence which he had dealt with just this year, and there were no facts on which to deviate from the prescribed sentences of life imprisonment.

Read more on:    durban  |  crime

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