UK & World News

  • 15 July 2014, 21:40

'Concrete Tomb' Housemate Killer Jailed

A man has been jailed for 14 years after he confessed to killing a housemate and burying him in a concrete tomb.

Sebastian Bendou, 36, admitted killing Christophe Borgye, also 36, last May.

The makeshift grave was at an outbuilding near the house the two Frenchmen shared in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire.

Officers, who were led there by Bendou, discovered the flight attendant's body wrapped in a dark tarpaulin and entombed beneath three layers of concrete.

Mr Borgye, originally from Ronchin near Lille, was first reported missing four years ago but police and family members thought he had left Britain.

Investigators believe he died in April 2009 after being stabbed and bludgeoned with a hammer, after an altercation over money.

They said 35-year-old neighbour Dominik Kocher was the driving force, and he controlled the finances of the pair - with their wages paid into his bank account.

The two defendants and another housemate, Manuel Wagner, 26 - who was cleared of assisting an offender and preventing a lawful burial - later left the area and moved to Scotland.

They were living in Dumfries at the time Bendou returned to Ellesmere Port and confessed to Cheshire Police, admitting manslaughter.

First sectioned under the Mental Health Act after his arrest, Bendou was later deemed fit to stand trial - being found guilty of murder at Preston Crown Court.

Detective Inspector Gwyn Dodd said: "This has been a long and extremely complicated investigation from the start, not least due to the language barriers but also issues surrounding the body and how it had been concealed."

Last March, Kocher was sentenced to 23 years after he was also found guilty of the murder.

It was found Kocher bought knives, bricks and cement, along with a tarpaulin, in the days preceding the murder.

Senior Crown Prosecutor Richard Riley added: "Mr Borgye, Kocher and Bendou were all friends yet Kocher seemed to exert some strange influence over the others that we have never managed to get to the bottom of.

"Borgye and Bendou had their wages paid into Kocher's account and, in return, he seems to have managed their affairs.

"We may never know the reason why Bendou and Kocher killed My Borgye on that fateful day - the picture is too murky. But it seems likely that money was at the heart of it."