Avtar Grewal

Back in July, jurors found Avtar Grewal guilty of first-degree murder in the death of his wife, 30-year-old Navneet Kaur.

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) -- The man convicted of killing his estranged wife in Ahwatukee in 2007 was sentenced Friday.

A judge sentenced him to life in prison.

Back in July, jurors found Avtar Grewal guilty of first-degree murder in the death of his wife, 30-year-old Navneet Kaur.

Grewal fled the country immediately after the 2007 murder, and his departure sparked an international manhunt.

After he was located, Grewal was finally extradited to Phoenix in 2011.

[RELATED: Witness testimony wraps up in 2007 Ahwatukee murder case]

The couple had an arranged marriage. She lived in Ahwatukee. He lived in Canada.

Prosecutor Juan Martinez, the lawyer who got a murder conviction in the infamous Jodi Arias trial, says the distance put a strain on the couple's relationship.

“If he called her, she needed to answer. Because if she didn't answer, he would continue to call and call and call and call some more,” Martinez told the jury during the trial.

In March 2007, Kaur decided she wanted a divorce.

Grewal flew to Phoenix to talk to her about it.

“They start slapping each other. They lost themselves in that moment," Grewal's attorney, Jeffrey Kirchler, said. "Next thing he knows, Avtar gets kicked in the groin. Next thing he knows, she’s falling to the ground hitting her head on the table.”

Before the night was over, she was dead, and he was on a plane to India.

Grewal did not deny killing Kaur but said he did not "intentionally" kill her.

But police say he left a handwritten note.

“He left a note behind, and the note said 'I killed this selfish b****,'" Martinez said.

[RELATED: Prosecutors focus on scribbled note in trial against man accused of killing wife in Ahwatukee]

The next morning, when their calls kept going to voicemail, Kaur’s co-workers started to worry.

“I told her that I wanted her to come stay at my house because I was worried something bad was going to happen to her,” said Kaur’s co-worker Gina Wilkins.

With the help of a neighbor, the women went into Kaur’s home, and found overturned furniture and blood on the floor.

Wilkins called 911. Police found Kaur’s body. She had been strangled and and was laying upside down in a bathtub full of water.

[WATCH: Man hasn't denied killing wife in 2007 Ahwatukee murder case]

“He didn't plan this. He didn't mean for this to happen. This happened, and it was a terrible terrible tragedy,” said Kirchler.

During the trial, Grewal took the stand in his own defense.

"You killed her, right?" asked prosecutors Martinez during the trial.

"But I didn't intentionally kill her," Grewal answered at the time.

"And in [the note] you didn't say, 'I accidentally killed her.' You know that word, right? Accidentally?" asked Martinez.

"What do you think? I was in my right mind frame?" answered Grewal, who claimed his handwriting in the letter shows he was in distress.

 


Copyright 2019 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

 

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