August 24, 2019
The more perverted and unnatural the relationship, the greater the toll paid by the coalburner.
An Edmonton judge rejected a man’s claim Thursday that he was too insane to be held responsible for stabbing his ex-girlfriend more than 100 times and cutting out her organs, including pinning her heart to a wall with a knife.
Silva Koshwal admitted to the stabbing death and gruesome mutilation of Nadine Skow in August 2015, but his defence lawyer Peter Royal argued Koshwal should not be held criminally responsible for his actions because he was in a psychotic state.
Under the Criminal Code of Canada, a person can’t be held responsible for an act committed while suffering from a mental disorder that makes that person incapable of understanding the nature of the act or appreciating that the act is wrong.
Crown prosecutor Laurie Trahan, however, said the extreme violence Koshwal perpetrated against Skow during and after her death was likely rooted in jealous rage, since Skow had plans to move away without telling Koshwal where she was going.
Court heard conflicting opinions from mental health experts who assessed Koshwal.
Forensic psychologist Leslie Block testified that Koshwal was likely experiencing a psychotic episode in the form of a flashback based on trauma he witnessed as a child in South Sudan, and believed Koshwal should not be found criminally responsible for his actions.
Justice Sterling Sanderman ultimately rejected Block’s assessment, saying his belief that Koshwal was suffering psychosis due to childhood trauma in war-torn South Sudan was a “theoretical construct” not supported by evidence.
Civil war in Sudan has caused the death and displacement of millions of people over the span of decades, and has been characterized by horrific human rights violations and mass killings. Koshwal recalled seeing bodies and hearing screams in the night as a child born in what is now South Sudan in 1976.
Sanderman said the defence had not sufficiently proven that Koshwal was in a psychotic state when he killed Skow, and ultimately found him criminally responsible for his convictions of second-degree murder and causing indignity to Skow’s remains.
This means Koshwal will likely serve a lengthy prison sentence.
Good on the judge for basically accepting that this was just TNB and had nothing to do with “mental illness.”
I’m actually shocked that such sanity still exists in the Canadian legal system.