Woman sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of her mother-in-law


Rajvinder Kaur, 37, from Southampton was today sentenced at Winchester Crown Court to life imprisonment with a minimum of eleven years before being eligible for parole after being found guilty yesterday of the murder of her 56-year-old mother-in- law, Baljit Kaur Buttar in what was the first electronic murder case in the Crown Court for CPS Wessex.

Following the conviction, Kerry Maylin, Principal Crown Advocate for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) Wessex said: "This was a complex case where the prosecution had to prove that Rajvinder Kaur, a 37-year-old mother of two from Southampton had murdered her mother- in-a law, by hitting her violently with a rolling pin in the family bathroom two days before she was due to go back to India.

"Rajvinder Kaur finally admitted killing her mother-in-law during a second trial but claimed that she was only guilty of manslaughter because she had been provoked into losing her self-control by Mrs Buttar.

"She also claimed that at the time of the attack, she was in an abnormal mental state, which may have limited her responsibility for the death.

"Our case was that Rajvinder Kaur was very angry when she attacked and killed her mother-in-law but her behaviour was not provoked or triggered by a fear of being seriously harmed or wronged by Mrs Buttar. The defendant's actions in the hours leading up to, immediately before, during, and after the attack did not suggest an act of desperation in the face of impossible circumstances, brought about by her mother-in-law. Whatever the reason for her deadly violence, it was not justifiable. This uncharacteristic violence was not as a result of any recognised medical condition, which may have made her unable to understand what she was doing, to act rationally or to exercise self-control.

"The jury heard both the prosecution and defence case and after considering all the evidence in this case including the assessments of psychiatric experts has decided that Rajvinder Kaur was guilty of the murder of her mother-in-law.

"This case was the first electronic case of its kind prosecuted by CPS Wessex and from start to finish information was shared electronically between Hampshire Constabulary, CPS Wessex and the Court Service. This is an important step in our move towards a more efficient criminal justice system.

"We would like to thank all the witnesses who came forward in this case. Our thoughts at this difficult moment go with Mr Singh and his children, who not only have lost their mother and their grand-mother but also will have to live all their lives with this tragedy."