Woman sentenced to 34 years for brutal murder
A 38-year-old woman has been jailed, today, Friday 28 October 2022, for the brutal murder of Mee Kuen Chong, known as Deborah Chong, a 67-year-old woman from the Wembley area of London.
Jemma Mitchell, from Brondesbury Park in North West London, was sentenced to 34 years for murder following a trial at the Central Criminal Court. The two women had met at church in 2020 and had formed a friendship. Struggling financially, Mitchell attempted to persuade the victim, who was vulnerable, to gift her significant amounts of money to complete the renovations of her home, which was in considerable disrepair. With the prospect of receiving money from the victim receding, Mitchell planned and executed the brutal murder of Deborah Chong at the victim’s home on the 11 June 2021.
Mitchell, a qualified osteopath, carried out a vicious assault on the victim, fracturing her skull and causing multiple rib fractures. She then removed the head before packing it, and the body, into suitcases, storing these for two weeks at her home. She then drove to Devon, where she dumped the remains of the victim in woodland in Salcombe, Devon.
The victim’s headless body was discovered on 27 June 2021 by a family out walking during their holiday. A subsequent police search discovered her head, some 30 feet away. Following an intensive police investigation and a review of hours of CCTV footage, Mitchell was identified moving suitcases to and from her friend’s property the day after the victim was last seen. Mitchell was arrested on 6 July 2021. A search of her house discovered a fake will, in the name of Mee Kuen Chong, leaving the vast majority of the victim’s assets to Mitchell. Other valuables belonging to the dead woman were also recovered.
Speaking following sentencing, Senior Crown Prosecutor Kristen Katsouris said: “This was a brutal and horrific crime. The victim, Deborah Chong, was a vulnerable woman in her late 60s. Mitchell preyed on Deborah’s vulnerability in an attempt to extract tens of thousands of pounds. When this failed, she decided to fake a will in the deceased’s name and then plotted her brutal murder. Using her anatomical skills, she then removed Deborah’s head, before driving some 200 miles to Devon, where she callously dumped Deborah’s dismembered body.
“Mitchell hatched her plot to kill Deborah solely to inherit her home and other assets. The murder was purely down to financial gain, and a vulnerable woman was murdered solely to enrich another.
“At no time has Mitchell shown any remorse for what she has done.
“I hope that Mitchell’s sentence today provides a measure of comfort to Deborah’s family, who have shown enormous dignity during the court events, despite the dreadful nature of Mitchell’s actions.”
Notes to editors
- Jemma Mitchell, DOB: 22/07/1984, from Brent in London
- Mitchell was sentenced to 34 years for murder
- Kristen Katsouris is a Senior Crown Prosecutor in CPS London North.