Wembley man accused of murder ‘planned to burn victim’s body in the Cotswolds’
- Credit: Archant
The killers of a millionairess planned to incinerate her body in the Cotswolds with barbeque charcoal and lighter fluid, a court heard.
Professional conman Rakesh Bhayani, 41, of Chamberlayne Avenue, Wembley, said he and Nicholas Kutner, 48, from Kentish Town, bought the materials from B&Q to create a makeshift funeral pyre for Carole Waugh.
They rented a Volkswagen Golf and went to the West Country to find a suitable location when her body was left in the boot of another car in London.
Bhayani told the Old Bailey it was Kutner’s idea to set fire to the body, adding: “I hadn’t done anything like this before. You could say I was out of my depth.”
Bhayani said the plan ended when Kutner disappeared from the hotel they were staying at.
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The car was driven to a garage in New Malden, Surrey, where it was eventually found by the police on August 2 last year.
She had been killed with a stab wound to the neck nearly four months earlier.
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Bhayani claims he was not at Miss Waugh’s flat in Marylebone, when she was killed and was only later shown her body under her bed by Kutner.
But prosecutor Patrick Gibbs QC said Bhayani had wanted to take over Miss Waugh’s identity so he could ransack her assets and sell her £650,000 flat.
The court heard Bhayani met Miss Waugh when he answered her Gumtree advert for escort work.
Bhayani claimed they began a casual affair, and that she had agreed to disappear from the country so that he could carry out various frauds using her name, with accomplice Kutner.
Bhayani and Kutner both deny murder but admit conspiracy to defraud.
A third man, Elie Khoury, 40, from Paddington, denies one count of conspiracy to defraud.
The trial continues.