Wednesday 17 July 2019 1:14 AM UTC
NEW YORK July 17: An Indian-origin man extradited from India has been convicted by a US court for killing his estranged wife 12 years ago when she asked for a divorce, according to media reports.
Avtar Grewal, 44, who was extradited to the US in 2011, was found guilty of first-degree murder by the jury on Monday, for strangulating and submerging his 30-year-old wife Navneet Kaur in a bathtub in the Phoenix suburb of Ahwatukee in 2007, the Arizona Republic reported.
His sentencing is scheduled for August 23.
The two got married in India in 2005, but had a long-distance relationship. Avtar Grewal was living in Canada while Navneet Kaur was in the US on a visa.
Prosecutors told the court that Avtar Grewal showed his “true colours” immediately after he married Navneet Kaur.
Avtar Grewal would call his wife multiple times to find out her location, according to prosecutors. When she didn’t answer the phone, he would call her office and other people.
Defence attorneys argued that Avtar Grewal killed his wife on accident and then made multiple attempts to take his own life. However, prosecutors argued the murder was premeditated and Avtar Grewal had a pattern of controlling behaviour.
During their marriage, Navneet Kaur needed heart surgery. She chose to be treated in the United States. However, Avtar Grewal wanted her to have the surgery in Canada.
Prosecutor Juan Martinez said the surgery was important to the trial because it showed Navneet Kaur cared about herself, while Avtar Grewal only cared about what was best for him.
Around the time of her death, Navneet Kaur told Avtar Grewal over the phone that she wanted a divorce. Avtar Grewal travelled from Canada to her Ahwatukee home so they could talk about it.
Navneet Kaur picked him up from the airport and took him to her house.
Navneet Kaur repeated her desire of wanting a divorce and admitted to cheating on Avtar Grewal, according to defense attorneys. The couple started to argue and it escalated to the two slapping each other, the defense attorneys said.
He strangled her and then submerged her in a bathtub of water. He was arrested by international authorities and extradited back to the US, the daily said.
The defense says while there was a fight between the two, Navneet Kaur’s death was not premeditated.
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