(File photo)

UPDATE: Bail decision not yet reached for Vernon murder suspect

Paramjit Singh Bogarh will appear in Vernon Law Courts at 9 a.m. June 29 for bail decision

A man extradited from the United States in connection with the 1986 murder of his wife sat clad in red as defence and the crown argued over bail.

Paramjit Singh Bogarh, 57, is charged with one count of first-degree murder and one count of conspiring to commit murder relating to the New Year’s Eve 1986 death of his spouse, Saminder Kaur Bogarh. Narindar Singh Bogarh, Paramjit’s brother, is also charged with the same counts and the BC Prosecution Service is pursuing his extradition. According to defence Russ Chamberlain, Narindar is in India.

The family of both the accused and the victim sat through the bail hearing Tuesday, June 19 and listened to crown prosecutor Ann Katrine Saettler and Chamberlain’s submissions. Due to a court-ordered publication ban, further information that arose during the hearing cannot be provided.

Paramjit will appear in Vernon Law Courts via video June 29 at 9 a.m. when Justice Frank Cole is expected to reach a decision on bail.

Related: Vernon cold case murder suspect makes first court appearance, seeks bail

“This is a very old case and the evidence against him is very scant,” Chamberlain told The Morning Star in a May 2018 interview. “Based on the intel I received from the Crown, it’s a weak case and the accused professes his innocence.”

Chamberlain also represented both men in 1987 when arrests were first made.

According to a Jan. 3, 1987 article in the Vernon Daily News, Murder charges stayed, a then 25-year-old Paramjit was charged with second-degree murder on New Year’s Day and was scheduled to appear in court Jan. 2 in relation to his wife’s murder.

However, instead of appearing in court Paramjit, who was a janitor, was released that afternoon when the Crown entered a stay-of-proceedings.

“RCMP Staff-Sgt. Jim Wilson told the Daily News there wasn’t the evidence to support the second-degree murder charge,” the article reads.

At the time of the incident, RCMP said the woman suffered several stab wounds and was found in the bathroom of their home in south Vernon. There were three people in the house at that time: Saminder Kaur Bogarh, Paramjit Singh Bogarh and a two-and-a-half-year-old boy who was later taken into the care of the Human Resources Ministry.

Dr. Bill Currie, a forensic pathologist assigned to the case, confirmed that the victim suffered stab wounds to the neck, hands, arms and legs.

Only two articles regarding the incident appeared in the Daily News in January 1987 — Stabbing death investigated Jan. 2 and Murder charges stayed Jan. 3.

None of the charges against either man has been proven in court.

Paramjit remains remanded in custody.

Related: First-degree murder charge laid in Vernon cold case


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parker.crook@vernonmorningstar.com

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