A man dragged his new wife from their bed and stabbed her in the back with a kitchen knife.
The victim suffered terrible internal injuries and lost a large quantity of blood in the attack. She later described how she thought she was going to die and wanted to see her mother and father one last time, a court heard.
However when police and paramedics arrived at the couple's home she was initially too scared to tell them what had happened and claimed she had fallen onto the knife.
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Newport Crown Court heard that Shashi Annadi and Poojitha Ettada married in August 2020 and then moved from India to Cardiff to study for master's degrees at university.
In the early hours of January 20 this year Annadi dragged his wife from their bed in the flat they shared in Cathays and plunged a kitchen knife into her back. The blade became embedded in her body. Tim Evans, prosecuting, told the court the knife caused damage to the victim's colon and duodenum – part of the small intestines – and "there was a real risk that she was going to bleed to death".
The court heard Ms Ettada tried to ring for help herself but was unable to and begged her husband to call 999.
When help did arrive the victim was too scared to report what had really happened and claimed she had fallen onto the knife. Ms Ettada only revealed the true cause of her injuries once her husband was arrested and taken into custody – but Annadi maintained this false version of events up to and during his trial. However a jury convicted him of unlawful wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm following a trial. He was acquitted of attempted murder.
The court heard Ms Ettada required surgery to repair the damage to her internal organs and spent 15 days in hospital before flying back to India. She subsequently developed a blood clot in her leg, had to learn to walk again, and nine months after the attack is still in pain.
In an impact statement which was read to the court the victim said she now lives in fear and has lost her faith and trust in people. She said when she saw the amount of blood she was losing from the wound she thought she was going to die and "all I wanted was to see my mother and father", adding: "I didn't want to die without seeing them." Ms Ettada said she knew the attack on her was now part of her life and had to try to accept it and to move on.
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Annadi, aged 28, of Richmond Road, Cathays, Cardiff, returned to the dock on Monday for sentencing. He has no previous convictions.
Ieuan Rees, for Annadi, said it was clear from a pre-sentence report that the defendant still does not accept responsibility for what he did. He said there did not seem to be any reason for the incident and "despite several conversations with him I am no nearer understanding why he did it".
Judge Daniel Williams said he was satisfied from text messages between the pair in the months before the attack that the defendant had previously subjected his wife to physical abuse. He said the evening of January 19 this year appeared to have been "unexceptional" but then shortly after his wife went to bed Annadi threw her to the floor and stabbed her in the back.
The judge described it as a "motiveless attack on a defenceless woman" and said a pre-sentence report had concluded the defendant posed a high risk of causing serious harm to future partners. As such, he said, an extended sentence was appropriate.
Annadi was made the subject of a 16-year extended sentence comprising 13 years in custody and an extended three-year licence period. The defendant can apply for release after serving two-thirds of the custodial element but it will be for the Parole Board to determine if he is safe to be let out.
If you or someone you know is affected by domestic abuse visit the Live Fear Free website or call the helpline on 0808 80 10 800.
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