Leamington murder case: man denies involvement in killing of ex-wife

A man accepts travelling to Leamington on the night his ex-wife was murdered at her Lillington home – but denies being involved in the killing, a judge has heard.

Jasbinder Singh Gahir and his son Rohan Singh Gahir both pleaded not guilty at Warwick Crown Court to the murder of 54-year-old Balvinder Gahir.

The charge follows an incident at an address in Valley Road, Lillington, in the early hours of August 24.

The police and an ambulance were called to the house where Mrs Gahir, the ex-wife of Jasbinder Gahir and mother of Rohan, was found to be suffering from a serious head injury.

Warwick Crown Court at the Warwickshire Justice Centre in Leamington

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Officers who were the first to arrive tried to administer CPR, but she was pronounced dead at the scene.

After Jasbinder, 57, and Rohan, 23, both of Church View, Maidenhead, had entered their not guilty pleas, Judge Andrew Lockhart QC said their trial would take place before him beginning on January 25 next year.

Questioning having a trial that soon, prosecutor Philip Bradley QC pointed out: “In the next two weeks I am going to review some evidence I anticipate will be coming my way, and it may be there are more defendants.”

Judge Lockhart remarked: “I’ve got four weeks to try it. I consider that long enough to try even a three- or four-handed case. If I put it back further, it’s going to be the summer.

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But he pointed out that, because of Covid-19 precautions limiting the number of people in the dock, ‘at the moment we can only try three defendants.

Told by Mr Bradley that there were ‘potentially two additional accused,’ the judge said that if that was the case, it may be necessary to ‘sever’ (or split) the case.

Asked by the judge what the defence case was, Gurdeep Singh Garcha QC, for Jasbinder, explained: “He accepts attendance in Leamington, but denies participation in any conflict with the deceased.”

And Judge Lockhart observed that Rohan’s defence was ‘no participation or knowledge of what was going to take place.’

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He adjourned the case for the trial, which it was estimated will last three weeks, to begin on January 25, with a pre-trial hearing at the beginning of that month.

But, remanding the defendants in custody, he told them, they may also have to attend a hearing in November if any other people are charged.