By Paul O’Hare – ROSHAN DANTIS compiled a chilling shopping list as he planned what he thought was the perfect murder. Recovered later from the killer’s laptop, the list included a meat cleaver, a knife, two mobile phone SIM cards, a balaclava, gloves, a hooded top and a trolley bag on wheels. The list included prices for each item and was followed by the words: “Total £175.”
The computer document also included a planned “chain of events” including “change to other clothes”, “wait in room” and “finish the job”.
Dantis deleted the file after he murdered 23-year-old Khusbu Shah – but a computer crime expert recovered it from the computer’s hard drive.
It proved to be a pillar of the prosecution case.
The second part of Dantis’s plan was to make it appear that Khusbu had been kidnapped for ransom. He began sending text messages to her husband Nagendra, whom he studied with at Strathclyde University.
One, sent using Khusbu’s own mobile on the day of her death, read: “We have ur wife.
“Don’t call police we are watchin u. If anyone is told we will kill her and u.”
But Dantis wasn’t as smart as he thought – a second text sent a short time later put him firmly on the police radar.
It said: “Call ur fat indian classmate home and sell ur tv to him 300 pounds.
“Take money later drop him home with tv in ur car. Don’t tell him or we harm ur wife.
“Do this to show u understand and will work with us.
“Arrange for 120000 pounds and go immediately first train to London.
“No compromise or u all die.”
That night, distraught Nagendra arranged to meet Dantis near the killer’s flat at Garthland Drive in Dennistoun, Glasgow.
He told the High Court that his “friend” urged him not to call the police “15 or 20 times”.
And he said that when he did dial 999, Dantis’s face “went dark”.
Breaking down in tears, Nagendra said: “There was nothing to do except call 999.
“He (Dantis) was my friend and he was supporting me.”
Nagendra called the police, who moved him and his son to a hotel and placed their flat in Dennistoun’s Coventry Drive under surveillance.
A few days later, Nagendra was staying at secure accommodation arranged by the police.
His phone was monitored and Dantis had been placed under surveillance.
Detectives believed Khusbu was still alive.
But then police watched Dantis going into a shop and buying a SIM card – and within hours came a final text from the killer.
This time, Dantis made an even more blatant bid to cover his tracks – and explain away the treasure trove of DNA evidence he knew he had left behind.
The text said: “This is our final message to u.
“We give up searchin for u and follow ur friend. Waste of time and money. U will not hr from us again. We go back to london.
“When my people saw u and friend waitin for police they followed orders.
“We warned u. No use waitin for ur wife she not coming bk.”
The message continued: “Very easy to break into both ur flats and take stuff.
“Ask ur friend abt blue bag brown hoodie other stuff also. His shoes size too small for us.Thanks tv for givin ideas to put blame on other ppl.
“Ur friend tried help you but u put him in trouble with ur call to police.
“We made sure he will be blamed for what happened to ur wife.”
Days later, Khusbu’s semi-naked body was discovered in a holdall in undergrowth near her home. Tyre marks from the trolley bag Dantis had bought clearly showed where it had been dragged off a pathway.
Khusbu’s head and hands were missing.
But they were later found by a police dog in a plastic bag which had been dumped on a railway embankment near Whitevale Street. And with them were a bloodied cleaver, hooded top and disposable plastic gloves – all items from Dantis’ shopping list.
The hoodie, cleaver and one of the gloves were stained with Khusbu’s blood, and Dantis’s DNA was on both the weapon and the top.
Police then obtained CCTV footage of Dantis buying the blue holdall from Argos at the Forge in Parkhead on May 28 – just four days before the murder.
Dantis’s DNA matched that on the handles and zip of the holdall.
He also blundered by using his own mobile phone to book taxis to and from the scene.
By using the name “Abdul”, Dantis had believed he was covering his tracks.
But telecommunications experts were able to prove a call was made from his phone close to the murder scene.
In court, Dantis claimed he had unwittingly “cleaned up” the crime scene and removed Khusbu’s body from the flat after he was threatened by a mysterious scar-faced man with a gun.
But the documents recovered from his computer showed how he had planned the killing himself as early as April. Even his library books pointed to his guilt.
At the time of the murder, Dantis had borrowed a book on forensic criminology and the Kathy Reichs novel Devil Bones, which features a series of decapitations.
And the killer’s crocodile tears in court when he gave his side of the story meant little to the jury, who took less than two hours to find him guilty.