Family of murdered pregnant mom awarded $600,000
Published Wednesday, April 16, 2014 1:51PM PDT Last Updated Wednesday, April 16, 2014 1:52PM PDT
Manjit Panghali was four months pregnant with her second child when she was killed in October 2006.
The family of a B.C. woman who was murdered by her husband while pregnant with their second child has been awarded more than $600,000 in damages.
The money will be paid by Mukhtiar Panghali, Manjit Panghali’s husband and killer.
The school teacher is currently serving a life sentence in prison after being convicted in 2011 of second-degree murder for fatally strangling his wife and then burning her body.
The 31-year-old victim, also a school teacher, was four months pregnant when she disappeared on her way to a yoga class in 2006. Her husband made a tearful plea at a news conference asking for tips to find her killer, but he was later linked to her death through video surveillance footage.
The money, which was awarded by a B.C. Supreme Court judge under the Family Compensation Act Tuesday, will help the family to raise the deceased’s 10-year-old daughter Maya, who was only three when her mother was murdered.
Jasmine Kaur Bhambra and Tarminderpal Singh Basra, Manjit’s sister and brother-in-law, have had sole custody of the little girl since 2007, and initiated the legal action to assist in her care, and provide an inheritance from their mother’s estate.
Bhambra told the court her sister planned to return to work at least part-time once she completed the maternity leave with her second child.
At the time of Pangali’s murder, she and her husband had $264,000 worth of equity in a Surrey home and owned a second property worth approximately $266,000.
Mukhtiar Panghali’s brothers have made a financial claim against those properties, and the matter will be the subject of a trial set for November 2014.