An Australian man allegedly strangled his Indian wife to death last year and killed his nine-year-old stepdaughter when she walked in to the murder scene unknowingly, a Sydney court heard.
The man, 43, was suffering from mild depression and killed his wife in a “crime of passion” during one of their frequent arguments, the prosecution said.
The little girl walked in as her stepfather was strangling her mother, an Indian social worker, to death after hearing her screams. The man told a cellmate in jail he later “dealt with” the nine-year-old girl by killing her also.
The man killed the two at their Blacktown home last year, drove the bodies in the boot of his car and pushed them off a cliff, the Daily Telegraph reported.
The man, who met his wife in an internet chatroom before she moved to Australia, reported them missing a month before their remains were discovered.
In his Supreme Court sentencing hearing, the man showed no emotion as a victim’s impact statement was read on behalf of his wife’s sister. The court heard the woman had moved to Sydney with her daughter after meeting the man online.
But soon after they got married in 2007, the woman confided that her husband had become possessive, controlling and had threatened to kill her or have her deported.
Crown prosecutor Chris Maxwell, QC, said the murders were in the worst case category and the man should be jailed for life. He said the man killed his wife because he was concerned he would lose half of his assets if they divorced, and he went on to murder his step-daughter to cover his actions.