London - A jealous factory worker strangled his ex-wife and dumped her body in a suitcase on the day their marital home was sold, a court has heard.
The body of Kiran Daudia, a 46-year-old mother of two was found in an alleyway near rubbish bins in January last year.
Ex-husband Ashwin Daudia, 51, is accused of killing her – possibly with her own scarf – after becoming resentful that she was making him homeless and meeting other men.
It is alleged he then tried to cover-up the death with ‘remarkable coolness’, trussing up her body with cable ties and wheeling it out of the house in a suitcase, the jury was told.
The couple, who had been married for 26 years, had continued to live under the same roof after their divorce in 2014. But on the day Mrs Daudia was killed, their jointly owned marital home had been sold to her sister for £140 000. While Mrs Daudia had arranged to continue living in the terraced property in North Evington, Leicester, her ex-husband had been told to leave.
But Leicester Crown Court heard the sale would make him ‘effectively homeless’ and he was ‘dragging his heels’ by failing to do any packing or make other living arrangements.
Mrs Daudia, who had worked in customer services for fashion store Next for 17 years, was seen on CCTV arriving home from work just after 2.20pm on January 16. She was said to be stressed because her ex-husband was not making an effort to move out.
William Harbage QC, prosecuting, told jurors: ‘Within the hour she was dead. There was an argument. There was a struggle in which he assaulted her.
‘The defendant, quite deliberately, killed his former wife by strangling her with some sort of ligature, probably her own scarf.’
Mr Harbage claimed Daudia cleaned up the scene and stuffed his ex-wife’s coat, scarf, boots and bag into a suitcase. He then ‘crammed’ her body into a second suitcase and wheeled both into the back garden so their youngest son, now 17, would not see them when he returned from college.
Mr Harbage told jurors that later, at 6.19pm, CCTV cameras captured a man walking down the street dragging a ‘heavy-looking’ suitcase.
Just after 9am the next day, Mrs Daudia’s body was found close to rubbish bins behind a house, around 200 yards from where the couple had lived.
After he was charged, Daudia told officers: ‘I haven’t killed her.’ Mr Harbage said: ‘We say that is a lie. After the divorce, Kiran joined a dating agency and had started to meet other men. That may also have been a source of tension or resentment for the defendant.’
Daudia, who followed proceedings with a Gujarati interpreter, denies murder.
The trial continues.