A husband who paid a machete-wielding gang to hack his wife to death after she demanded a divorce has been convicted of her murder.
The attack on receptionist Geeta was so violent her hand was chopped off as she tried to protect herself.
Husband Harpreet Aulakh was convinced she was having an affair and logged on to her Facebook page to spy on her.
Indian-born Aulakh, 32, then paid henchmen £5,000 to kill her as she went to pick up their two sons, aged seven and eight, from a child minder.
Yards from the carer’s front door in Greenford, West London, the gang pounced and Geeta was hacked to death in the street.
The 28-year-old suffered “devastating injuries executed with real, severe force” which included her hand being chopped off as she desperately tried to protect her head from the merciless onslaught.
The gang fled and Geeta died four hours later in hospital from serious head injuries.
Before her death she had told friends she was in a loveless marriage. She had been persuaded twice before not to separate by relatives.
But two months before her death she signed a divorce petition on the grounds of verbal abuse, accusations of infidelity and domestic violence.
Geeta told a work colleague her husband had warned her “if he could not have her then no one else would”.
And a month before her death she wrote to her husband on Facebook: “I have never hated anyone in my life, but you.”
“It was the stigma of divorce, particularly for her, which let the marriage limp on. She ultimately decided that she had a life which she wanted to lead, but away from him.
“Harpreet Aulakh’s reaction displayed a chilling belief — almost certainly culturally rooted — in male unaccountability.
“How dare a mere woman — as he and other like-minded accomplices would view her — challenge that smug chauvinist mind-set?”
Mr Jafferjee described how Harpreet recruited Sher Singh, then 18, and Jaswinder Dhillon, 30, to carry out the “hideous crime” last November.
So he could provide an alibi on the day of the killing he deliberately went to a pub which had CCTV.
“But this act of cunning backfired,” Mr Jafferjee said.
“Why go to a pub that you are not a regular at, which just happens to have CCTV, at a time when your wife is being killed unless you know in advance of a terrible event and you need an alibi yourself in readiness for it?”
An Old Bailey jury found Aulakh guilty of murder alongside Singh, 19, from Southall, West London, and Dhillon, from Ilford, East London.
The jury are still deliberating on Harpreet Singh, 20, from Slough, Berks, who is alleged to have acted as the driver.
By MIKE SULLIVAN, Crime Editor, The Sun