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Prosecution: Murder accused blamed woman’s ex in “cover-up”

Prosecution: Murder accused blamed woman’s ex in “cover-up”

Wednesday 28 October 2020

Prosecution: Murder accused blamed woman’s ex in “cover-up”


A 56-year-old man accused of killing his secret lover “pointed the finger of suspicion at her former boyfriend” as part of an effort to "cover up" what he had done, the prosecution alleged on the second day of his retrial.

Jamie Lee Warn is standing trial in the Royal Court over the murder of Zsuzsanna Besenyei (37), whose body was found at Stinky Bay in May 2018.

Mr Warn, who also denies perverting the course of justice, is being represented by Advocate James Bell. 

Yesterday, on the second day of the trial, Crown Advocate Simon Thomas showed the jury further CCTV footage of First Tower Car Park, in which he said Mr Warn could be seen driving away in Zsuzsanna’s car just after 00:30. 

Simon-Thomas.jpg

Pictured: Crown Advocate Simon Thomas is leading the prosecution.

While he noted the man in the footage had his hood up, he said it was “plainly someone of similar stature” to Mr Warn’s, carrying a “distinctive rucksack” Mr Warn had been seen using in other images.

The Crown Advocate said cell site information showed Mr Warn’s phone had been communicating with masts near covering Les Charrières, Les Landes, Jersey Airport and even Guernsey. This, he said, was “particularly useful” in pinpointing Mr Warn as the one driving Zsuzsanna’s car and as being in the area of Stinky Bay, where he suggested Mr Warn had disposed of her body at low tide.

“What other reason can there have been for his mobile phone to have been at Stinky Bay at that time given that we see him going into the car park with the distinctive rucksack?” he asked the jury to consider. 

The Crown Advocate said that after disposing of Zsuzsanna’s body, Mr Warn drove down to La Haule slip and onto the beach before abandoning her car at the water’s edge, leaving the windows open “to create the impression she had abandoned the car and drowned."

Zsuzsanna Besenyei missing woman

Pictured: Zsuzsanna Besenyei was 37 when she died.

“This was a key part of his plan to cover up what had happened,” he said. 

The vehicle was recovered later on that Monday and the Crown Advocate said that by the time it was dry, there were only “limited opportunities” to find forensic evidence.  

The jury heard that after one of Zsuzsanna’s friends contacted Mr Warn to tell him a missing person investigation had been launched, he called the police and “pointed the finger of suspicion at her former boyfriend”, referring to the difficulties him and Zsuzsanna had been having and the fact that the man wanted to reignite the relationship. 

The jury heard that Home Office Registered Pathologist Dr Russell Delaney had been unable to identify the cause of Zsuzsanna’s death due to the state her body was in when it was recovered. The Crown Advocate, however, noted that the “gravitational draining of blood” was consistent with her having been placed in the boot of a car. 

The Crown Advocate said that while Mr Warn hadn’t been able to make sure Zsuzsanna’s body was never recovered, he had managed to ensure “that the body was in such a state that it was not possible to establish what had happened to her”, adding that there was neither evidence of a natural cause of death nor any suggestion she had committed suicide.

James Bell.jpg

Pictured: Advocate James Bell is representing Mr Warn.

The Prosecution called several witnesses to the stand yesterday, including a beautician with whom Zsuzsanna had made appointments for 11 May and a woman for whom she worked as a cleaner. Both said Zsuzsanna was reliable and that it was out of character for her not to show up without letting them know.

The jury also heard from the man with whom Zsuzsanna shared a flat. He said she would normally leave money for her rent for him to collect on a Sunday morning. 

When she didn’t leave her money the week of her death, the man contacted her. He said her reply “didn’t sound like her at the beginning” as it mentioned she hadn’t “been feeling too well." The man explained she hadn’t told him she was ill the previous day “so she wouldn’t have said that."

The trial, which is expected to last three weeks, continues today.

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