Bibi Shareema Gopaul and Jarvis “Barry” Small, who were found guilty of the October 2010 murder of her daughter, 16-year-old Neesa Gopaul, have appealed the verdicts and their 45-year jail sentence to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), according to the Chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
Gopaul and Small were sentenced to 102 years and 96 years by Justice Navindra Singh for killing her daughter after being found guilty by a 12-member jury for the capital offence of murder. In September of this year, the Guyana Court of Appeal upheld their convictions but reduced their sentence to 45 years’ imprisonment each.
The DPP Chambers have since confirmed that lawyers for the convicts have filed a notice of appeal at the CCJ against both the sentences and earlier convictions. At the Court of Appeal, Gopaul and Small, among other things, had argued that they were not given a fair trial and accused the trial Judge of admitting prejudicial evidence.
The decomposed and headless remains of the younger Gopaul, a former student of Queen’s College, was found stuffed in a suitcase in a creek along the Linden-Soesdyke Highway. Also discovered were her passport and bank card.
The suitcase was wrapped with rope and attached to dumbbells in an apparent effort to keep the young woman’s body submerged.
The former QC student was found weeks after she was reported missing from her West Coast Demerara (WCD) home. Her cause of death was given as multiple blunt force trauma to the head.