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Murder/suicide in St Augustine: Woman shot dead, ex-husband kills self

Published: 
Friday, January 10, 2014
Grieving relatives of Dian Paladee (below) leave the Forensic Science Centre in St James yesterday, after viewing her autopsy. Photo: JENSEN LAVENDE

The quiet community of Bedasie Street, St Augustine, was thrown into a state of shock yesterday with the discovery of the bodies of Sanjeev Rambaran and his ex-wife Dian Paladee. Paladee, 49, was an heir to the Pennywise chain of cosmetic stores, which was founded by her father Lall Paladee, who died in 2009. She was a teacher at the El Dorado South Hindu School. The estranged couple was found at Rambaran’s home around 4.30 am yesterday, bringing a gruesome end to a frantic five-hour search for Paladee. Paladee was found in her ex-husband’s bedroom on his bed, having been shot once in the head, her ex-husband lay a few feet away. After killing Paladee he turned the gun on himself. Police found a rolling pin between the two bodies and she appeared to have been beaten.

 

 

An autopsy performed on Paladee yesterday at the Forensic Science Centre, St James, showed that she had been handcuffed, mouth duct-taped and shot in the head with a shotgun. The cause of death was a single gunshot to the head. Rambaran is said to have then placed the shotgun in his mouth and using a crowbar pulled the trigger. As a result of the shotgun blast his head was blown off and he had to be positively identified via his serial number for his pacemaker. Paladee’s brother Satnarine contacted the Anti-Kidnapping Squad around 11 pm on Wednesday when she failed to show up at her home at Prashanti Drive, Orchard Gardens, Chaguanas, and at a function she was scheduled to attend earlier that night. In 2005, Paladee’s brother Dane was kidnapped outside his Mohammed Road, Tunapuna, home. He was released on August 30, six days later. His kidnapper demanded a $3 million ransom and he was released after part of the money was paid. Police said Paladee’s relatives tried contacting both her and Rambaran but neither answered their cellphones. The relatives went to Rambaran’s home, saw Paladee’s car parked in the driveway and contacted AKS, who broke in and found the two on the floor.

 

 

Rambaran, 44, a manager at Carib Brewery, was described as nice person by neighbours who said they never suspected he could commit such an act. Neighbours told the media yesterday that Paladee would regularly visit her ex-husband, as the two had an amicable relationship. They added that Paladee would visit and help Rambaran clean his apartment. Landlady Angie Sookhoo, who gave the members of the AKS a key to enter the home described them as “lovely people.” She said the murder/suicide has shocked the community, which had never experienced anything like this in the past. Sookhoo wondered if the country was a living hell, considering the amount of bloodshed for the year so far. The murder/suicide of Paladee and Rambaran is the second for 2014. Last Saturday Shastri Roopnarine, 24, shot and killed his girlfriend Amanda Persad, 22, before putting the gun to his head and pulling the trigger.