(CMC) — A Supreme Court judge has handed life sentences to two Bermudians convicted of the “chilling and merciless” murder of a Trinidadian guest worker in 2006.
Katrina Burgess, 49, and Cleveland Rogers, 53, will be required to serve at least 25 years behind bars for the murder of 32-year-old Marcus Gibbings, who was stabbed to death, before they are eligible for parole. The two were convicted by a unanimous jury verdict of premeditated murder in March.
In a victim impact statement, Gibbings’ family had asked the court to show the defendants “no mercy” for their actions that left three children without their father.
Sentencing the pair on Friday, Puisne Judge Craig Attridge said he would have considered an even harsher penalty for the “senseless” killing of the Trinidadian, if he was able.
“It’s clear that Mr Gibbings was many things to many people. A beloved son and father, a trusted friend and a responsible and well-liked colleague. He didn’t deserve to die in this violent and depraved manner,” the judge said.
Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions, Carrington Mahoney, said the murder was “deliberate, planned and coldly executed” by the defendants.
He told the court Burgess, who had been in a relationship with Gibbings, had paid Rogers US$5,000 to kill him after they had broken up.
Mahoney said Burgess lured Gibbings to a Devonshire parish apartment where Rogers ambushed him with a knife in October 2006.
He added that while Rogers was the one who carried out the act, both were actively involved in the crime and both deserved equal sentences.
Mahoney said neither had any mitigating factors in their favour. Neither had pleaded guilty or expressed remorse and both had multiple previous convictions.
The court heard Rogers had been imprisoned previously for theft, assault and sexual exploitation, while Burgess had multiple convictions for dishonesty and forging cheques.
The Gibbings family statement said: “We would give anything to have Marcus with us, to take away the pain and terror he suffered that night.”
The family added that Burgess had “done everything possible” to disrupt their grieving process in the more than 13 years since Gibbings’ death.
“All Marcus ever did was try to love her and her daughter and for that he paid the ultimate price, his life,” the family said in the statement.
Gibbings worked at Hamilton communications firm CCS as an engineer. He had lived in Bermuda for more than eight years at the time of his death.