Warning: This story contains disturbing details
A pathologist testified in Ranbir Dhul’s murder trial on Wednesday that his alleged victim, Samandeep Jhengar, died of strangulation.
The 23-year-old’s body was found hidden under a plastic sheet and a rolled-up carpet in the basement of a Warman, Sask., home in early July 2020.
“The cause of death is strangulation,” said pathologist Shawn Ledham.
Ladham could not say whether the white adhesive tape covering her mouth and nose played a role in her death.
Dhall, a former Saskatoon taxi driver, is charged with first-degree murder and is on trial before a single judge in the Court of King’s Bench.
It is alleged that Dhul killed his ex-wife’s cousin Jhingar. The 44-year-old is charged with first-degree murder because Jhingar died while illegally imprisoned.
Crime scene photos released Wednesday showed Jingar on his back against a wall on the cement floor of a basement. He has white tape over his mouth and white plastic string binds his hands in front of his body. The same cotton is tied around her thighs and lower legs, which are partially bent as if she is thought to be in the fetal position.
A scarf and pants are wrapped around his neck.
Ladham said the marks on Jhingar’s back were consistent with her body being dragged. The marks on her neck suggested that the ligature had been pulled and tightened from behind.
He said there was no evidence of sexual assault or trauma to her head.
Under cross-examination by defense attorney Andrew Mason, Ladom said he saw no evidence of wounds on either defendant’s body.
Ladham said during the interrogation that although Jhingar’s wrists were tied, his hands were empty.
“There was nothing to restrict his hands or fingers.”
The Crown closed its case on Wednesday. Mason said he would call the defense’s evidence. The trial has now been adjourned till November 7.