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Jealous husband jailed for life for murder of estranged wife

|News, Violent crime , Domestic abuse

A jealous husband who accused his estranged wife and mother of his two children of “disrespecting and humiliating” him has been sentenced to life imprisonment for her murder.

Satpreet Singh Gandhi, 37, killed 32-year-old Harleen Kaur Satpreet Gandhi with a single stab wound to her upper chest using a kitchen knife he purchased at an Asda store just days before. 

On 5 September 2022, Gandhi took a taxi to his estranged wife’s flat, where he accused her of cheating on him and lashed out over their child being kept from him by her parents in India before attacking her with the knife. Harleen died on the doorstep of her flat in Headingley just after 6pm. 

Armed with the weapon, in the days immediately preceding the fatal attack, Gandhi loitered outside Harleen’s home on four separate occasions. Police officers later found a letter at his address that read: “This is my revenge for the humiliation and disrespect.” 

Today at Leeds Crown Court, Gandhi was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 23 years and four months. He pleaded guilty to murder at an earlier hearing.

Senior Crown Prosecutor Emma Covington, from the CPS, said: "The murder of Harleen Kaur Satpreet Gandhi was premeditated and horrific. Satpreet Singh Gandhi killed his wife because he could not control her and could not stand to watch her enjoy the life she had made for herself after moving to the UK.

“He has deprived two young children of their parents in the most traumatic way possible.

“The prosecution built a compelling case against Gandhi so that when faced with the overwhelming evidence against him, he pleaded guilty to the murder of his wife.

“Our thoughts remain with Harleen’s family and her children as Gandhi begins his life sentence.

“The CPS is committed to securing justice for victims of domestic abuse and will always seek to hold violent offenders to account for their crimes.” 

The couple married in India and moved to the UK, settling in Leeds, West Yorkshire, in March 2021.

Soon afterwards, Gandhi became extremely jealous of the social life his wife had made for herself and saw it as disrespectful towards him. To control her, he accessed Harleen’s phone, believing she lied to him about her movements and that she was engaging in friendships with men. He also blamed her when he turned to alcohol.

Harleen ended the relationship and moved to a flat on her own. One of their children remained with Gandhi, whilst the other was with their mother’s family in Pune, India.

The final straw for Gandhi came when his wife’s family decided that both children should live with them rather than return to be with him in the UK.

Gandhi said in a text message to a family WhatsApp group: “I have to take this step,” adding: “This cheating and insult was hitting me like hell. The anger was uncontrollable now.”

In another message, he wrote: “If u start disrespecting ur son in law and dnt trust him like ur daughter, everything will be messed up. Girls parents play a very important role in every relationship but when they just start listening and blindly trusting their daughter, this is what happens.”

In further messages Gandhi sent to family members after the murder, he wrote: “I told them all very clearly that this is not done and if u dnt change this decision and send [child] to UK, u all will have to regret their whole life for this decision.”

Gandhi was arrested at home after one of his family members alerted the police to the text messages, but Harleen had already been stabbed.

Notes to editors

  • Satpreet Singh Gandhi (DOB: 8/9/85), from Burley, Leeds, pleaded guilty to one count of murder on 8 November 2022 at Leeds Crown Court.
  • Emma Covington is a Senior Crown Prosecutor with CPS Yorkshire and Humberside.
  • Domestic Abuse legal guidance can be found on our website.

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