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Lawyer preparing appeal of murder conviction for mother, ex lover

CONVICTED FOR MURDER: Bibi Shareema Gopaul and Jarvis “Barry” Small.

Lawyers for a woman and her lover, who were convicted for the murder of her 16-year old daughter and dumping her body in a creek, plan to appeal the life sentences handed down by the High Court on Thursday.

Attorney-at-Law, George Thomas said he would file the appeal as early as Monday on behalf of Bibi Shareema Gopaul and Jarvis “Barry” Small.

Gopaul was sentenced to 106 years imprisonment and Small 96 years for the capital offence of murder.

But their Defence Attorney intends to appeal the case on grounds that the defence case not adequately put to the jury and flaws on the application of circumstantial evidence.

Thomas said the appeals are not expected to be heard until another three years.

Before a courtroom packed with lawyers, members of the public and court workers, Small said he was not given a fair trial, prejudicial evidence was included in the case and the judgment was politically motivated.

Justice Navindra Singh’s calculation of his sentence for Gopaul was : 60 years for murder, 10 years for premeditation, 10 years Neesa Gopaul was a child, 10 years for brutality, 10 years because the girl was her  daughter and she failed to protect her and six for domestic violence.

For Small, the calculation was: 60 years for murder, 10 years for premeditation, 10 years for brutality, 10 years for because  the younger Gopaul was a child and six years for domestic violence.

The decomposed body of Gopaul, a student of Queen’s College, was found in a suitcase in a creek along the Linden-Soesdyke Highway on October 2, 2010.

Along with her remains were a passport and a bank card that bore her name. The suitcase was wrapped with a rope and dumbbells in an apparent effort to keep the body submerged.

She had been previously reportedly missing from her home at Leonora, West Coast Demerara since September 24, 2010.