Ex-husband, accomplice plead guilty to killing Babita Sarjou
Shradanand Narine also called “Anand” and Daral Ponton also known as “Yankee” were on Monday arraigned for the murder of Babita Sarjou before High Court Judge, Simone Morris-Ramlall.
They both pleaded guilty to the charge which stated that on November 4, 2010, at Georgetown, they murdered Sarjou. Their sentencing is set for February 6, 2023.
Back in 2017, the duo was committed to stand trial in the High Court for the murder of 28-year-old Babita Sarjou, whose body was dug up from a shallow grave in her ex-husband’s yard in May 2016 – some six years after she went missing.
Following the conclusion of the Preliminary Inquiry (PI), the two murder accused heard that a prima facie case had been made out against them and as such, they were committed to stand trial before a Judge and jury.
Narine, also called “Anand” of Lot 51 Seaforth Street, Campbellville, Georgetown; and Ponton, called “Yankee” of Lot 54 Broad Street, Charlestown, were charged in May 2016 with the brutal murder of Sarjou.
The charge against the two alleged that on November 4, 2010, at Campbellville, Georgetown, they murdered the mother of one.
Babita Sarjou went missing in November 2010 after she left her mother’s Timehri, East Bank Demerara home to meet her son and estranged husband to view the annual Diwali motorcade at the Kitty seawall.
According to Sarjou’s mother, Champa Seonarine, after her daughter failed to return home, she assumed that she had stayed with her husband.
The following morning, however, Narine called Seonarine’s residence and enquired of Sarjou’s whereabouts, explaining “the little bai (Sarjou’s son) want talk to his mother”. Narine had initially told investigators that Sarjou never showed up for their meeting that night.
A report was then lodged at the Kitty Police Station and Seonarine was told that Narine had already lodged a report at the station, claiming Sarjou could not be found and he was there to ‘clear his side’.
For years, the case remained inactive as investigators hit a stumbling block. The case was, however, reopened in 2016 after Police received information about what may have happened to Sarjou.
Narine, who was released after Police had no solid evidence against him, was picked up in 2016 and taken back into custody for further interrogation, during which he reportedly confessed to killing her and subsequently led investigators to the spot where he buried Sarjou aback his home.
After hours of digging in Narine’s yard, the team led by Crime Chief Wendell Blanhum, dug up a skull, several bones, a pair of high-heeled shoes, a brassiere, and bits of clothing, all belonging to the dead woman.
Ponton was allegedly implicated in the murder by Narine, who also revealed to Police that he paid his friend some $50,000 and a promise of a trip to Trinidad in exchange for him to kill the woman.
Ponton reportedly carried out the act when Sarjou boarded Narine’s car by strangling her to death. The duo reportedly then took the woman back to the Campbellville residence, where they buried her body in a shallow grave. On Monday, the two men were represented by Nigel Hughes while the State was led by Prosecutor Muntaz Ali and others.