UPDATE: Not guilty plea coming in Maple Batalia murder

Lawyer for Gurjinder (Gary) Dhaliwal says his client is innocent until proven guilty; Gursimar Singh Bedi also appears in court.



One of the men charged in the murder of SFU Surrey student Maple Batalia – Gurjinder (Gary) Dhaliwal – will be pleading not guilty, his lawyer said.

On Monday morning, Dhaliwal and the second man charged in the case – Gursimar Singh Bedi  – appeared in Surrey Provincial Court.

On Sept. 28, 2011, 19-year-old Maple Batalia was gunned down on the third floor of the Central City parkade, beside Simon Fraser University, following a late-night study session.

She had been studying with friends and left for the parkade just before 1 a.m. when she was shot multiple times in what police believe was a targeted attack.

She died later in hospital.

At a press conference Saturday night, police announced that Maple’s ex-boyfriend Dhaliwal, 20, and “associate,” 22-year-old Bedi, have been charged with her murder.

Dhaliwal has been charged with first-degree murder, while Bedi has been charged with manslaughter with a firearm and accessory after the fact.

“Although we can’t bring Maple back, we’re happy to see that those (allegedly) responsible for this are now going to suffer the consequences,” said Maple’s sister Roseleen, who spoke on behalf of the family at a news conference Saturday night. “We’re just hoping Maple will finally be at peace.”

Batalia, an aspiring actress and model who was finalist in the 2011 Central City Model Search, was planning to go to medical school.

At a candlelight vigil in Holland Park two days after her murder, Batalia’s parents were overcome with grief.

“This wonderful child, a jewel of mine, has been snatched away forever,” said Maple’s father Harkirat Batalia, who called his daughter his little Tweetie Bird.

“My charming little sweet child, I’ll miss you. May God take you in heaven and keep you there… and please God help me in this moment.”

Batalia’s mother expressed similar depth of despair earlier in the day.

Photo: Sarabjit Batalia

“My life is finished,” Sarabjit Batalia told The Leader. “What is my life without her? She was the star in our life and our whole family.”

In December of last year, the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team (IHIT) seized a white 2011 Dodge Charger that was seen leaving the scene of the murder. IHIT has had more than 50 officers working on the case.

On Friday night, police arrested the two men – Dhaliwal in Burnaby and Bedi in Surrey- and took them into custody.

Details of the arrest and investigation were scant Saturday night in order to protect the integrity of the upcoming trial.

The two men remain  in custody and are scheduled to appear in Surrey Provincial Court again by video link on Dec. 17.

Just Posted

Delta mosque part of open-house effort launched in wake of New Zealand shootings

The ‘Visit a Mosque’ campaign aims to combat Islamophobia

White Rock dog poop conspiracy picks up steam

Opponent says theory is a ‘load of crap’

Surrey MLA slams NDP poverty reduction strategy plan

Liberal MLA Marvin Hunt says the NDP’s poverty reduction plan is ‘underwhelming’

Father thanks Surrey Mountie for shooting hoops with kids, ‘changing perspectives’

‘We’re just like everyone else,’ says Surrey officer who stopped to play basketball with kids

Surrey Memorial is first in B.C. with POEM machine used for endoscopic treatment

Surgeon says equipment is ‘next-level, futuristic-type’

Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Latest budget includes a sprinkling of money for voters across a wide spectrum

Facebook to overhaul ad targeting to prevent discrimination

The company is also paying about $5 million to cover plaintiffs’ legal fees and other costs

Teacher reprimanded after incident with Grade 11 student in school gym

Gregory Norman Brock was teaching at a high school in the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District

Explosives unit brought in after suspicious boxes left at B.C. RCMP detachment

Nanaimo RCMP issues all clear after packages were found on lawn earlier in the day

Avalanche control tomorrow on Highway 1

Expect closures of up to two hours east of Revelstoke

Newfoundland man caught after posting photo of himself drinking and driving

The 19-year-old took a photo of himself holding a beer bottle and cigarette while at the wheel

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Carfentanil found in 15% of overdose deaths in January: B.C. coroner

Carfentanil is 100 times more powerful than illicit fentanyl and used to tranquilize elephants

Kids found playing darts with syringes in Vancouver Island park

Saanich police is urging people to throw out their syringes properly and safely

Most Read

l -->