DETROIT (WWJ) - Sentenced to mandatory life in prison without parole for his wife's murder, Bob Bashara maintains his innocence and vows he will appeal.
Dressed smartly in a suit and tie and sporting a new short haircut, Bashara sat silently as his mother-in-law, Lorraine Englebrecht, spoke directly to him at his sentencing Thursday.
"You took Jane's life, but I want you to live awhile," Englebrecht said. "Because I'm not gonna be here that long, but every day I live I wanna think about you rotting in jail, and someday burning in hell."
"Why didn't he just go and live his scummy dungeon life, and leave my daughter and my grandchildren alone? Why did it have to come to that?" Englebrecht asked.
Bashara, 57, was convicted in December of ordering Jane Bashara's death at the couple's Grosse Pointe Park nearly three years ago.
Prosecutors said Bob Bashara hired handyman Joe Gentz to carry out the killing, wanting his wife out of the way so he could lead an alternative lifestyle that included bondage and domination with sexual "slaves" who called him "Master Bob."
"I had absolutely nothing to do with my wife's death...I loved my Jane dearly," Bashara said, given a chance to speak following the victim impact statements. "I will appeal this until I can appeal no more."
Wayne County Circuit Judge Vonda Evans chided Bob Bashara as she handed down his sentence, calling him a "master of manipulation" with a "dark heart."
"Your love was a cancer. You were not a provider you were a predator," Evans said.
"They say an idle mind is the devil's workshop. While your main slave — your wife who bore you two beautiful children — was required to work 12-hour days, and after 20 years required to return to the workforce to maintain a fantasy life that you were allowed to live," Evans said, "you were free to sharpen your manipulative skills by being involved in the BDSM lifestyle."
"...You managed to manipulate that consensual lifestyle into a tool. It was your arsenal to prey on vulnerable women."
Bob Bashara was already in prison for trying to have Gentz, killed in jail in 2012.
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