Man found guilty of murder - Gerrards Cross

07/12/2015

A man has today, Monday, 07 December 2015, been been convicted at Reading Crown Court of the murder of a woman, whose body was found in a layby near Gerrards Cross earlier this year.

Navin Mohan, aged 35, of no fixed abode, was found guilty by unanimous jury at Reading Crown Court of the murder of 34-year-old Anita Kapoor from Uxbridge. Mohan will be sentenced at the same court tomorrow, Tuesday, 08 December 2015.

Anita Kapoor was with her boyfriend in Southall late at night on Monday, 22 June this year, but by the early hours of Tuesday, 23 June they had lost sight of each other. At about 4.30am he called her and heard her begging for her freedom. He heard Anita say: "Please let me go, I won't say anything."  Then the line went dead.

He immediately called her back, the phone was answered and hung up again without anyone saying anything. He called back repeatedly, but the same thing happened, until he tried again and the phone appeared to be switched off.  He called the Metropolitan Police at 5.33am and reported her missing.

At just after 8.30am the same day, Anita's body was discovered by a member of the public in a layby off the A413 near Amersham, Gerrards Cross. She was missing some of her personal effects including her coat, trainers and mobile phone.

She appeared to have been strangled and a post mortem confirmed the cause of death as asphyxiation.

Using a combination of mobile phone data, CCTV images and ANPR (automatic number plate recognition), by the evening of Wednesday, 24 June, Navin Mohan, a delivery driver from Southall, had been identified as a suspect. He was soon located, stopped in his vehicle, a red Nissan Micra, and arrested on suspicion of Anita's murder.

DNA evidence confirmed that Anita had been in his vehicle and he was charged on 27 June with her murder.

Adrian Foster, Chief Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "This case involved the tragic murder of 34-year-old Anita Kapoor, from Southall, whose partially clothed body was found in undergrowth next to a layby on the A413 Amersham Road, to the south of Chalfont St Peter and the east of Gerrards Cross on 23 June this year.

"Police were notified of the discovery of a woman's body just after 8.30am on 23 June 2015, by a lorry driver, who had stopped in the layby for a break. Emergency services attended and declared the woman dead at the scene. She had no personal effects on her and was identified by fingerprints taken with a mobile scanner.

"Navin Mohan's car was captured on CCTV in Saxon Road, Southall just after 4am 23 June picking Anita up and at various locations thereafter. The prosecution case was that Anita was strangled in the back of the car by Mohan before 4.40am in Southall. In fact, Anita's boyfriend overheard her pleading for her life on an open line from her mobile phone. Mohan then dumped Anita's body in the layby in Buckinghamshire before heading home. This is again proved by Mohan's car being captured on ANPR and CCTV in the vicinity of the deposition site and Anita's mobile phone data showing it registered on the network in the same areas as Mohan's car.

"Within 36 hours, of Anita's body being found, Mohan, also from Southall, had been stopped in his red Nissan Micra and arrested on suspicion of murder. The car was seized and forensic evidence, including DNA, confirmed that Anita had been in the car. He made no comment during police interviews and gave no explanation for Anita's fate, who was last seen getting into his car. The motive for the killing, although believed to be to silence Anita after a serious sexual assault, remains a mystery, but what is clear is that Mohan is an extremely ruthless, violent and dangerous man. Anita must have been very afraid in those final moments of her life. Mohan was today, Monday, 07 December 2015, found guilty of murder despite his denials.

"This case represents a tragedy for Anita's family and friends who have been devastated by her death. I would like to pay tribute to them for their wholehearted support of the investigation and prosecution and the dignity they displayed while hearing the horrific details surrounding Anita's murder. I would also like to thank the witnesses, who gave evidence in very difficult circumstances.

"We have worked closely with Thames Valley Police since this investigation was launched and as a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, a just outcome has been achieved. We know that nothing will bring Anita back to her family and friends, but we hope that today's conviction brings them at least a small sense that justice has been done. Our thoughts are very much with them all at this time."

Detective Chief Inspector Kevin Brown of Major Crime, leading the investigation, said: "This was a vicious attack on a vulnerable woman. From the moment he was arrested by police until his conviction Mohan has denied responsibility for Anita's brutal murder, despite a weight of evidence against him.

"By denying the allegations he has forced Anita's family and friends through the rigours of a court case and all it entails including re-living her last moments which must have been terrifying for her.

"I would like to thank them all for their patience and tolerance though this extremely difficult time. I would also like to thank the Metropolitan Police and the public for their assistance in this investigation which has brought a violent man to justice."