Trio convicted in manslaughter cover-up over drugs feud

A man who tried to cover up killing a creditor over a drugs debt by setting fire to his body, has been convicted at the Old Bailey.

Raphael Kokkinos, 34, of Polworth Road, Streatham pleaded guilty to manslaughter and perverting the course of justice before the start of the trial on April 13.

Two other people, Aaron Williams, 29, of Warwick Gardens, Thornton Heath and the defendant’s mother, Sophia Kokkinos, 70, of Chelsham Road, Clapham were found guilty of perverting the course of justice at the conclusion of a trial on Tuesday of last week.

All three will be sentenced at the same court, on a date to be confirmed.

Jean Loike Guei was killed as a result of a dispute over drugs which had been stolen from Kokkinos’ home in August 2020. Detective chief inspector Wayne Jolley, who led the investigation, said: “Following the burglary, Kokkinos owed Guei a significant amount of money which he had no way to pay back.

Raphael Kokkinos Picture: Met Police
Raphael Kokkinos Picture: Met Police

“When Guei arrived at Kokkinos’ address, he was attacked and killed. Kokkinos then persuaded and enrolled the help of his friend, Williams, and his mother to assist in covering up the crime.

“Their plans were no match for the work and determination of our team who used all of the resources at our disposal to gather a huge amount of evidence against the defendants.”

Mr Guei’s body was discovered after a member of the public spotted a fire in bushes on the side of a road near Mitcham Common in the early hours of Thursday, September 17, 2020. A post-mortem concluded he had been assaulted and killed prior to his body being moved and set on fire.

On September 14, Kokkinos called Mr Guei to say that he had some of the money he owed and agreed to post it through the door of an address given to him by Mr Guei.

Aaron Williams Picture: Met Police
Aaron Williams Picture: Met Police

The money failed to materialise and CCTV seized by officers showed that the following day, Mr Guei made his way to Kokkinos’ flat in Polworth Road where he parked his car and went into the property just after noon.

Officers believe that Mr Guei was killed almost immediately by Kokkinos. Aaron Williams arrived at the flat later that day and played a pivotal role in getting rid of Mr Guei’s car, the court heard, by taking it to a mechanic on the pretence of selling it.

The car used to transport the body was also sold on by Williams. The new owner said it was “exceptionally clean” inside and smelt of chlorine, indicative of the work done to try and remove any trace of Mr Guei from the vehicle.

Sophia Kokkinos Picture: Met Police
Sophia Kokkinos Picture: Met Police

Kokkinos’ flat had also been subject to a thorough clean and to the naked eye there were no signs of any struggle. However, crime scene experts did discover two small bloodstains in the kitchen area which were later proven to be a match to Mr Guei.

 

 


 

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