A Dartford man who murdered and buried his girlfriend while on holiday in Peru has been jailed for life. 

Jorge Garay, 46, killed 37-year-old Karla Godoy before wrapping her body in tarpaulin and dumping her in a makeshift grave on land owned by his family. 

Garay’s conviction is a landmark moment as it is the first time a UK court has prosecuted someone who lives in the UK for a murder committed abroad. 

The couple travelled to Peru via Spain on September 15, 2022, but Karla’s family did not hear from her after September 23. 

The day before she went silent she had confirmed plans to travel to Spain but never arrived. Her family became concerned and contacted police in Spain, Peru and Kent. 

On October 4, Garay returned to the UK alone and told his landlord Karla has stayed in Spain when he went to Peru. 

Garay then emptied the flat they shared in Dartford and handed his keys back to the landlord. 

On October 12 Garay was reported to have confessed to killing Karla in a telephone conversation, claiming they had argued and he had acted in self-defence. 

Peruvian authorities then found her body in his family’s garden in Lima. She had been stranged to death. 

News Shopper: The makeshift grave Garay buried Karla inThe makeshift grave Garay buried Karla in (Image: Kent Police)

Garay was arrested in London two days later and on July 17, 2023, a jury him guilty of murder. 

At Maidstone Crown Court on Friday (July 28) Garay, of Hythe Street, was sentenced to life with a minimum of 17 years. 

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.”