Former Vernon man accused of murdering his wife seeks bail - InfoNews

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Former Vernon man accused of murdering his wife seeks bail

Paramjit Singh Bogarh
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June 19, 2018 - 4:46 PM

VERNON - A former Vernon man accused of murdering his wife with the help of his brother will have to wait a little longer to learn if he’ll be released on bail.

Paramjit Singh Bogarh spent all of today, June 19, in court as Crown and defence lawyers made arguments about whether or not he should be released on bail.

Bogarh, born in 1961, was charged on Jan. 31, 2018 with first degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the death of his wife more than 30 years ago at their home in Vernon.

The victim, Saminder Kaur Bogarh, was brutally stabbed to death on Dec. 31, 1986.

Bogarh’s brother, Narinder Singh Bogarh, born in 1964, is also charged with first degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. Narinder remains outside of the country — in India, according to Bogarh’s defence lawyer — and the B.C. Prosecution Service continues to pursue his extradition.

Bogarh was extradited from the United States earlier this year to face the charges. This is the second time he’s been charged in his wife’s killing. The first was in 1987, however those charges were stayed shortly after. He then moved to California and, according to U.S. court documents filed in support of his arrest and extradition, became active in the religious community. Documents allege that Bogarh admitted to killing his wife in the 1990s while seeking election to the board of directors of a religious group. None of the allegations have been proven in court.

The Vernon courtroom where Bogarh’s bail hearing was heard was packed with family members today as lawyers argued for and against his release. Due to a routine publication ban, evidence heard at the hearing, along with specific arguments over his release, cannot be published.

Bogarh, now in his late 50s, sat intently in the accused box, wearing a red prison issue uniform and a white turban, a long, white beard reaching to his chest. He often glanced around the courtroom at those seated in the gallery, and at his lawyer, Russ Chamberlain.

Lawyer Ann Katrine Saettler presented the Crown’s case at today’s hearing, which was heard before Supreme Court Justice Frank Cole. Justice Cole expects to deliver his ruling on June 29.

According to the Criminal Code of Canada, ordering an offender detained is justified if one or more of the following grounds are met: the detention is necessary to ensure the accused’s attendance in court, the detention is necessary for the protection or safety of the public, including any victim of or witness to the offence, or any person under the age of 18 years, having regard to all the circumstances including any substantial likelihood that the accused will, if released from custody, commit a criminal offence or interfere with the administration of justice, and if the detention is necessary to maintain confidence in the administration of justice.

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