A man who strangled and buried his partner while on holiday in Peru has been found guilty of her murder.

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

Garay, 46, of Hythe Street, Dartford, was found guilty of murder today (July 17).

It took the jury at Maidstone Crown Court seven hours to reach their verdict.

The court heard how the couple had travelled to Peru via Spain, having left the UK on September 15, 2022.

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

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.

News Shopper: The burial siteThe burial site (Image: Kent Police)

On Tuesday October 4, 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.

Friends and family of Karla continued to search for her and on October 12, Garay was reported to have made a confession through a telephone conversation in which he confessed to murdering 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.

On Friday, October 14, Garay was arrested in London with help from the Met Police.

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

Garay is due to be sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court on Friday, July 28.


Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Inspector, Lee Neiles, of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “Karla Godoy’s life was violently cut short by a man she trusted during what was supposed to be a holiday for the couple.

“Garay’s actions not only ended her life, but he tried to cover up his crimes by callously disposing of her body and hiding it in a makeshift grave.

“Karla leaves behind a young daughter who now faces growing up without her mum and leaves a family without their daughter, sister and aunt.

“Despite Garay’s initial confession to Karla’s family, he pleaded not guilty and instead chose to put her family through the ordeal of a trial, where details were heard that no family should have to listen to.

“This was a complex case which involved working with international police forces, agencies and prosecuting authorities and I’m pleased we have been able to secure this conviction and hope it offers some justice for Karla and her family.”