UK & World News

  • 7 December 2012, 17:08

EastEnders: Brother Admits Killing Actress

The brother of a former EastEnders actress, whose headless body was found in a London canal, has admitted killing her.

Tony McCluskie pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of his sister Gemma as he appeared at the Old Bailey by videolink from Belmarsh Prison.

The  35-year-old denied murder, saying had he "suffered loss of control".

Miss McCluskie went missing after attending the opening of a hospital earlier this year. Her brother, whom she lived with, joined friends in launching an extensive search to find her.

Former EastEnders co-stars Natalie Cassidy and Brooke Kinsella appealed on Twitter for help.

The 29-year-old's headless and limbless body was found a week after she went missing, floating in Regents Canal in east London.

A trial was due to begin last month, but was delayed because of the discovery of her head in September.

Prosecutors are still waiting for medical reports to establish how the actress, who played Kerry Skinner in the BBC soap in 2001, died.

McCluskie will now face trial for murder on January 14.

Judge Gerald Gordon said the trial must not be delayed any further.

"The family must have closure", he said.

McCluskie's father, who is also called Tony, watched from the back of the court as his son admitted to the killing.

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