Any plans of spending Christmas outside the walls of the Georgetown Prisons, ended abruptly for Paul Anthony
Lo-Hing yesterday after he was sentenced to serve 83 years in jail for the murder of his girlfriend, Shoala Gilgeous.
Lo Hing, a resident of South Sophia, was facing retrial for the murder before Justice Navindra Singh and a mixed twelve member jury at the High Court in Georgetown.
Lo Hing’s last trial was conducted before Justice Diana Insanally; it ended in a hung jury hence the retrial.
According to the evidence provided in court, Lo Hing strangled Gilgeous during a heated argument at their Block ‘E’, South Sophia residence on August 6, 2012.
According to reports, the accused shared a turbulent one-year relationship with the victim before she was eventually killed. Gilgeous’s body was discovered by relatives who ventured into the apartment building in search of her.
Lo Hing was subsequently arrested and charged for the offence, but maintained that he was innocent of the crime.
During the trial, Lo-Hing was represented by Attorney- at- Law Keavon Bess. State Prosecutors Teshana Lake and Narissa Leander called six witnesses to the stand.
Among them were Monica Charles, Alain Gilgeous and Alana Gilgeous both relatives of the murdered Sophia woman, and Government Pathologist Dr. Nehaul Singh.
Dr. Singh testified that a Post Mortem (PM) examination conducted on the victim determined the cause of death to be asphyxiation due to manual strangulation, which was compounded by blunt trauma.
On Tuesday, the victim’s brother, Alain Gilgeous, told the court that on the day his sister was murdered, he received a call from her boyfriend, informing him that he needed to come home and check on her.
The man said, he was subsequently told something had happened to his sister. He recalled that he lived in the apartment next door to his sister with the mother of his children, Monica Charles. Gilgeous said that his sister and Lo-Hing were involved in
frequent fights during their brief relationship.
The witness held firm that the accused had played a part in the death of his sister. Both Monica Charles and Alana Gilgeous recalled that the victim was involved in a heated argument with her boyfriend, hours before she was found dead in her apartment.
The witnesses recalled that Gilgeous’s body was found in her apartment around 17:30h that day. They noted that relatives had received telephone calls from the boyfriend, who asked them to check on the woman.
The victim’s niece also testified in the matter. She said that she was the first person to discover her aunt’s body. She recalled that she entered the apartment where she found her aunt lying motionless on the floor.
Yesterday after a few hours of deliberation, the mixed panel of jurors returned a unanimous guilty verdict.
In his ruling, Justice Singh told Lo Hing that his sentence will start with a base of 60 years. The Judge added 10 years to the sentence for the cruel manner in which the woman met her demise, 10 years for evidence of an intention to kill and six years because the case was a domestic violence related matter.
Three years was taken off the sentence for the time which the accused spent in prison pending trial, bringing the sentence to 83 years. Lo Hing is expected to serve 50 in jail before he is eligible for parole.
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