A murderer who killed and buried his partner while on holiday in Peru has been sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum of 17 years behind bars.

Jorge Garay latest
Image of Jorge Garay

Jorge Garay killed 37-year-old Karla Godoy before he wrapped her body in a tarpaulin sheet and dumped her in a makeshift grave on land owned by his family in Lima, Peru.

On Friday 28 July 2023, Garay, 46, from Dartford, was sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court where he was told he must serve a minimum of 17 years before being considered for parole.

He was previously found guilty of murder following a trial at the same court after a jury returned the verdict on Monday 17 July after seven hours of deliberation.

Kent Police was able to secure the charge after officers utilised legislation under Section 72 of the Domestic Abuse Act 2021 for the first time.

The legislation provides police with powers to prosecute a person who lives in the UK but has committed a violent offence in another country.

This is believed to be the first time the law has been used in the UK for a murder case.

During the trial the jury heard how the couple had travelled to Peru via Spain, having left the UK on Thursday 15 September 2022.

Karla’s family, who reside in Honduras and Spain, last heard from her on Thursday 23 September where she confirmed her plans to travel to Spain the following day, however the mum-of-one did not arrive.

Karla Godoy latest
Photo of Karla Godoy

Her family became concerned, and after trying to reach Karla they contacted the police in both Spain and Peru. The authorities commenced investigations to try and find Karla and a report was made to Kent Police.

On Tuesday 4 October Garay returned to the UK alone. He told his landlord that Karla had stayed in Spain when he went to Peru and also claimed he had been robbed of his money and ID while away.

He then went on to empty the flat they rented in Dartford and handed his keys back before he left the area.

Confession by Garay

Friends and family of Karla continued to search for her and on 12 October Garay was reported to have made a confession via a telephone conversation in which he confessed to killing Karla and claimed they had argued and he had acted in self-defence.

On the same day Karla’s body was located by Peruvian authorities in the garden as described. She had been strangled and had to be identified through fingerprints.

Buriel site latest
Photo of the burial site

On Friday 14 October Garay was arrested in London with assistance from the Metropolitan Police Service.


On Sunday 16 October the Crown Prosecution Service gave authorisation for detectives from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate to charge Garay with murder.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Inspector, Lee Neiles, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said: ‘Today’s sentencing will not bring back Karla, but I hope it provides her family with some form of closure and justice.
‘Karla trusted Garay but he committed the ultimate betrayal and took away her life, leaving her daughter without a mum and her family without their daughter, sister and aunt.
‘This was a complex investigation which included working with international police forces, agencies and prosecuting authorities.
‘Kent Police led the investigation, and we were able to secure the charge of murder using specific powers under the Domestic Abuse Act 2021, which we believe is the first time it has been used in the country as part of a murder case.
‘Karla’s family has been left mourning her needless loss and I can only hope that now the case has concluded that her family and friends can find some closure.’

By Ed

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