A man who murdered his ex-girlfriend and her young daughter and hid the bodies has been sentenced to life in prison with a minimum non-parole period of 21 years.
Kamal Reddy killed Pakeeza Yusuf in the early hours in December 2006 by strangling her with the cord of an iron, and used a pillow to kill her daughter Jojo.
Their bodies were only discovered under a bridge on the North Shore in 2014.
In sentencing at the High Court in Auckland today, Justice Asher told Reddy the victims deserved to live long happy lives and instead they died terrible deaths.
He described it as a "shocking and callous" double murder.
'You could've just left, instead of taking two innocent lives'
Ms Yusuf's mother Rojina Banu said she spoke to her daughter every day but she suddenly stopped calling around Christmas in 2006.
She said rumours were going around the community that her daughter had moved to Australia but she could not find her.
Ms Banu said she was sorry now, but at the time she was angry at her daughter for losing touch.
She said eight years later when police visited her to tell her the remains of her daughter and granddaughter had been found, her deepest fears were confirmed and her health took a turn for the worse.
It made her physically sick to think that during her daughter's disappearance, Reddy had even asked her to cook for him and his son, she said.
Ms Banu said she now had dreams of her daughter visiting her and trying to tell her something, and that she wanted justice.
She imagined the terrible things the pair must have heard and felt in their last moments and felt awful that they likely called out for her and she could do nothing.
"Why did you kill her, if it was not working out, you could've just left, instead of taking two innocent lives while they slept," she said.
She said she hoped Reddy used the time to think about all the lies he told about her daughter.
Justice Asher tanked her for her courage.
Reddy's lawyer Jonathan Krebs said his client maintained his innocence but he was sorry for his role in helping the killer get rid of the bodies.
But Justice Asher said he found Reddy's evidence about another killer to be absurd.
He said he acknowledged Reddy's victims.
"They deserved to live happy lives. Instead they died terrible deaths at your hands."
Justice Asher said Reddy showed no insight into his offending or empathy to his victims. He said Jojo was particularly vulnerable - being a three year-old asleep at the time.
A thorough investigation
During the trial, the court was told the bodies were taken in the back of Reddy's car, covered by a blanket, and buried under Takapuna motorway bridge.
Following a police undercover operation, Reddy eventually told undercover officers that he had carried out the murders and led officers to the bodies.
At trial, Reddy claimed the confessions were false and to cover for Ms Yusuf's new boyfriend.
The Crown said he had an alcohol problem and had beaten Ms Yusuf before their relationship ended.
The prosecutor said Mr Reddy had helped Ms Yusuf into a new flat in Howick by paying the $750 rent deposit but grew resentful when she stopped him from coming around.
His uncle, Ben Naidu, gave evidence that Reddy had come to him in the middle of the night to ask where he could dispose of the bodies.
Before Reddy's trial began, Naidu had already pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact to murder.