London, Nov. 25: Maninder Singh Kohli, who was arrested near Kalimpong in 2004 for the rape and murder of schoolgirl Hannah Foster in England, was sentenced to life imprisonment at Winchester Crown Court today.
Condemning Kohli for the “appalling” kidnap, rape and murder of a petrified teenager, Justice Keith said the crime was aggravated by “Hannah’s vulnerability as a young slip of a girl, the terrible and appalling ordeal which Hannah must have gone through before you killed her, the wanton way you disposed of her body and the unimaginable grief to which you have subjected her family”.
The judge told Kohli, 41, he would have to serve at least 24 years before he was considered for parole.
Kohli, a delivery driver, kidnapped Hannah from near her home in Southampton, Hampshire, in March 2003. After he raped and killed Hannah and dumped her body, he fled to India.
He assumed a new identity and “married” a Nepali woman but the publicity given to several trips to India by Hannah’s parents, Trevor and Hilary Foster, led to his arrest.
He fought a long extradition battle before he was sent to Britain to face trial last year. Today, the jury returned a unanimous guilty verdict.
The judge praised Hannah’s family for the dignity with which they conducted themselves through the trial and offered his condolences.