"What he has done has torn our family apart."
Akash, a student from India who was studying in Auckland, New Zealand, was high on methamphetamine when he murdered his pregnant girlfriend, 22-year-old Gurpreet Kaur.
Gurpreet was 7-10 weeks pregnant when her body was discovered on the side of a road in New Zealand’s Waikato area. She was found with nine stab wounds and 20 cuts to her body.
24-year-old, Akash, pleaded guilty and now faces life in prison after the murder.
The Judge stated that Akash’s crime was “cruel, brutal and callous”.
Akash’s lawyer, Murray Gibson, told the court he and Gurpreet were having a secret relationship not known to their families and tattoos of each other’s names on their wrists demonstrated their affection for each other.
Gurpreet had been seeing Akash when she was supposed to be studying. Gibson explained:
“For approximately a year Gurpreet’s mother was dropping her off at the Manurewa railway station to go into the city to study when she was really getting picked up by the defendant.”
The court also heard that until the day of the murder, Akash believed he was the father of Kaur’s unborn baby.
It was reported that Akash had a history of psychotic episodes and previously took medication for it. However, since arriving in New Zealand three years ago on a student visa, he had discontinued his prescription.
Justice Matthew Palmer said that his actions have not only sacrificed a life but deprived her family of the potential of another life.
“You knew she was pregnant and stabbed her most deeply and often in [the] abdomen,” stated Justice Palmer.
It was revealed to the court by Crown prosecutor Gareth Kayes that shortly before murdering Gurpreet, Akash had taken some methamphetamine which he bought in the morning. Kayes said:
“You stabbed [Kaur] with a knife you had in the car in the scalp, face, neck, chest and abdomen and cut her jugular.”
“Medical evidence suggestings she was some 7-10 weeks pregnant and she had not yet told her parents,” added Kayes.
Kaur’s family described the young lady as a ‘clever, independent’ and ‘cheeky girl’. In a statement her father announced:
“Our dreams have been shattered. We are unable to bring her back regardless of what we do. We are like birds lost without one wing and can’t imagine flying again.”
Her brother said he now struggles to sleep. He said: “New Zealand doesn’t feel like a safe place anymore.
“What he has done has torn our family apart.”
Two days after murdering her, Akash confessed after police found blood stains in his car. He pleaded guilty to the crime after initially pleading not guilty.
Akash will now serve a minimum of 17 years in prison and then will be deported back to India.