Court hears Lea Adri-Soejoko was “wary” of her alleged allotment killer in Colindale
- Credit: Archant
An elderly grandmother who was strangled in a Colindale allotment with a lawnmower cord was “wary” of her alleged killer, who had a reputation for being “threatening” and “volatile”, a court has heard.
Lea Adri-Soejoko, 80- also well-known by her maiden name of Lea Hulselmans, had a “notorious” run-in with Rahim Mohammadi at the allotments meeting in Sheaveshill Avenue before he allegedly beat her up and then throttled her to stop her reporting his behaviour and losing his plot, the Old Bailey was told on Tuesday.
Mohammadi, 41, has denied murdering Mrs Adri-Soekoko on February 27 last year. She was found by police with a flex wrapped around her neck in a locked shed.
Prosecutor John Price QC told jurors that the victim, who was secretary of the Colindale Allotment Association, was beaten up by Mohammadi and then killed to “stop her complaining”.
He said the defendant was known by other plot holders for his “threatening, intimidating, aggressive and sometimes even physically violent behaviour” and was “capable of recovering his poise just as quickly”.
He said there was no suggestion he had previously assaulted Mrs Adri-Soejoko but mentioned a “notorious occasion” at an allotment meeting in September 2016.
He responded to a rebuke by her with a display of verbal aggression directed towards her, which shocked others and distressed her, he told jurors.
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Mr Price added: “We know from what others later observed of her and from her insistence that the minutes of that meeting should include a full account of what happened, that she was affected by it and, as has been said by some who knew her, was ‘wary’ of him.”
Mrs Adri-Soejoko’s family and friends had become concerned after she failed to turn up for an allotment society meeting on February 26.
Early the next morning, police followed the sound of her ringing phone and found her body inside a locked shed on the allotment which was used to store mowers.
She had suffered fractured ribs and bruises from being “beaten up” and the starter cord of a Mountfield lawnmower had been wrapped around her neck, the court heard.
As a committee member, Mohammadi had his own key to the mower shed which had been locked from the outside with Mrs Adri-Soejoko’s body inside, with her keys in her pocket.
The trial continues