An obsessed and infatuated man's refusal to accept a break-up drove him to kill his ex-girlfriend during a brutal, prolonged and jealous rage, a court has heard.
Rohit Deepak Singh, 42, is accused of murdering Arishma Singh (Chand) last November after he lay-in-wait at her house with a large kitchen knife.
The 24-year-old mother was found dead in her South Auckland home by her parents Rakesh and Aradhana Singh, when they returned home after visiting relatives.
A Herald source said at the time she was found lying on the floor of her bedroom "in a pool of blood" in the early hours of November 12.
Rohit Singh was charged with murder three days later.
Today, his High Court trial in Auckland before a jury and Justice Grant Powell began.
Crown prosecutor Claire Robertson said during her opening address Arishma suffered a "brutal and prolonged attack with a knife and a weapon".
Arishma was living in a Maich Rd house in Manurewa with her parents and her 3-year-old daughter.
The young mum was separated from her husband but they shared custody of their daughter. She was also known as Archana Chand, her ex-husband's surname.
Shortly after her death, the Herald revealed Arishma, who was born and educated in Fiji, was at a friend's birthday party and was killed soon after returning to her home.
Her daughter was not at the house when she died and police later revealed Arishma attended the party with her boyfriend, who accompanied her home but left soon after.
While alone, moments after her boyfriend left, the Crown alleges Rohit Singh attacked.
It would be less than 16 minutes before Arishma's parents arrived home and found their dead daughter.
She had been stabbed in the back, shoulder and arm, bashed across the back of her head with a weapon, and had her face slashed.
A wound to her groin also cut a vital artery.
"By the time her parents arrived home she was already dead," Robertson said.
The year before, Rohit Singh had been in a secret sexual relationship with Arishma, which ended in August 2016, Robertson explained.
The Crown lawyer said the defendant was "obsessed and infatuated" with Arishma and "refused to accept she didn't want to be with him".
"It was this obsession which drove him to kill her," Robertson said.
The court heard Rohit Singh believed Arishma, who worked as a child educator and had studied at the University of the South Pacific, was cheating on him and became preoccupied with the idea.
It led to Rohit Singh sending threatening Facebook messages, an inundation of daily calls and text messages and a tattoo of Arishma's face on his chest, Robertson said.
A couple of days before Valentine's Day last year, Rohit Singh also took flowers to Arishma's house and sent her a series of texts.
"I want to tell you something, every day I think about you, every day I talk to your photo...," one text read.
"Today I really miss you, all alone ... One day you will realise when you get to my age. What goes around comes around," another message said.
The killing, Robertson alleged, was a premeditated murder after Rohit Singh told a friend of his plans and sought "a large kitchen knife".
He then began watching Arishma's home from a car.
When Arishma returned with her boyfriend from the party they heard a noise coming from one of the bedrooms, the court heard.
They investigated but didn't find anything, Robertson said.
Before Arishma's boyfriend left they also discussed a suspiciously out-of-place rock on her deck but passed it off as inconsequential.
Despite this, Arishma was growing concerned and called her parents who said they would be home in 15 minutes.
It was 12.53am.
At some time before they arrived home at 1.09am she was attacked in her bedroom.
Robertson said it was Rohit Singh, who was "waiting and watching" before leaving his ex "lying in a pool of blood".
He then fled and drove to the North Shore, the Crown alleges.
At 10.18am, Rohit Singh called police and said he had been a victim of a robbery where three girls had stolen his car, taken his belongings and scratched his face.
He told police the robbery occurred at 1.30am.
Robertson said the robbery claim was a fabricated alibi after Rohit Singh had dumped his clothes, blooded knife and weapon.
However, while police did not find those items they would discover forensic evidence allegedly linking Rohit Singh to the killing, she said.
The trial continues tomorrow when defence counsel Belinda Sellars delivers her opening address.
Where to get help
If you're in danger now:
• Phone the police on 111 or ask neighbours of friends to ring for you.
• Run outside and head for where there are other people.
• Scream for help so that your neighbours can hear you.
• Take the children with you.
• Don't stop to get anything else.
• If you are being abused, remember it's not your fault. Violence is never okay
Where to go for help or more information:
• Shine, free national helpline 9am- 11pm every day - 0508 744 633 www.2shine.org.nz
• Women's Refuge: Free national crisis line operates 24/7 - 0800 refuge or 0800 733 843 www.womensrefuge.org.nz
• Shakti: Providing specialist cultural services for African, Asian and middle eastern women and their children. Crisis line 24/7 0800 742 584