Husband gets 43 years for ‘barbaric’ murder of wife

K&VC Hotel killing

Vinod Balgobin was yesterday found guilty of murdering his common-law wife by stabbing her 35 times in a city hotel room and he was sentenced to 43 years in prison by Justice Franklyn Holder.

Balgobin was on trial for the murder of Mary-Ann Sunita Nauth, who was killed at the K&VC Hotel in Georgetown between March 11 and March 12, 2013.

Vinod Balgobin
Vinod Balgobin

In handing down the sentence, Justice Holder told Balgobin that he had killed his wife in a most “barbaric manner” and had deprived his children of their mother and left them with emotional scars for the rest of their lives.

The judge told the convict that he had “invited his wife to her death,” which he had premeditated, for his own “selfish reasons.”

Justice Holder ex-plained to Balgobin that his sentence started at 45 years but two years were deducted for the time he had spent in prison awaiting trial.

The judge, however, ordered that the convict must not be eligible for parole until after he would have served 27 years of his sentence.

Asked if he had anything to say as to why the court should not sentence him, the expressionless Balgobin, in a barely audible tone, answered in the negative.

Additionally, asked whether he had anything to say in mitigation, Balgobin once more answered in the negative.

Mary Ann Nauth
Mary Ann Nauth

Meanwhile, Prosecutor Teshana Lake noted that there is nothing known of the convict to the police.

The man’s relatives were teary-eyed after hearing the verdict.

After being called upon to lead a defence, Balgobin had given an unsworn statement from the prisoners’ dock. A unanimous verdict was subsequently returned after almost four hours of deliberation by a 12-member jury.

Nauth’s body was discovered in room 209 of the K&VC Hotel on South Road.

She had told relatives that she was going to meet with Balgobin to collect money for their children.

Recounting the testimony of Government Pathologist Dr Nehaul Singh during his sum-up to the jury, Justice Holder noted that the deceased was stabbed 35 times in total; 14 of the wounds were sustained around the chest and on eight occasions the blade passed through the body.

Directing the jury, Justice Holder explained that they should decide the case only on the evidence they heard and not on speculation and that their opinions and emotions must play no part in it.

The state’s case was presented by Prosecutors Lake, Orintha Schmidt and Shawnette Austin, while Balgobin was represented by attorney Compton Richardson.

 

The prosecution called 19 witness, 10 of whom were police witnesses.