Briton goes on trial for murder of two Spaniards
17 October 2005, MALAGA — Briton Tony Alexander King has gone on trial accused of murdering two young Spanish teenagers.
17 October 2005
MALAGA — Briton Tony Alexander King has gone on trial accused of murdering two young Spanish teenagers.
King, 40, is accused of murder, illegal detention and sexual abuse of 17-year-old Sonia Carabantes in 2003 and Rocio Wanninkhof, 19, in 1999.
Carabantes disappeared in the early hours of August 2003 when she was returning home from a fiesta at the town of Coín, near Malaga.
He body was found in a shallow grave in Monda, after five days of intensive searching by police.
A post-mortem found she had been strangled and attacked. At the time there were no signs of sexual abuse.
A month later, King was arrested in Alhaurín El Grande, near Malaga, after his girlfriend at the time told police she had seen traces of blood on his clothes and cuts on his face on the same night on which Carabantes disappeared. King had gone to the fiesta at Coin.
DNA samples taken from King allegedly linked him to Carabantes and to the death Wannikhof, who disappeared in nearby Mijas in October 1999.
Rocio disappeared from her home in October 1999 and was found strangled and naked. She had not been sexually assaulted.
The case has attracted huge interest in Spain and beyond. There are 70 journalists accredited to cover the trial which could last for up to a year.
As King arrived at court in Malaga, he shouted to waiting press: "I'm innocent. I didn't do anything."
The prosecution has asked for King to be jailed for 44 years if he is found guilty. King denies the charges.
José María Garzón, lawyer for the Carabantes family, told the media before the trial: "All the facts suggest without any doubt that the accused is guilty."
Carabantes' mother, Encarnación Guzmán, who is due to appear as a witness in the trial, said: "I hope that justice condemns him and he never leaves jail."
The Spanish authorities were warned by British police in 1998 that King was allegedly a danger to women.
Surrey Police had realised a year earlier that Tony King and the so-called "Holloway Strangler" Tony Bromwich were one and the same person.
The force gave Interpol his fingerprint details, along with information on his past crimes and his address in Spain.
Interpol traced him to that address in 1999 - the year it is alleged he strangled one of the two young women he is accused of murdering.
Surrey Police contacted Interpol after investigating King over the alleged rape of a 21-year-old Hungarian student near Leatherhead railway statio in 1997.
The offence in 1997 was later treated as an indecent assault.
"We consulted with the Crown Prosecution Service, but were advised by them that there was not enough evidence to extradite him from Spain," a Surrey Police spokesman said.
The force contacted King's family and his solicitors to try to bring him back to the UK but without success.
In January 1999, Interpol confirmed to Surrey Police that Spanish officers had traced King to the address they had been given.
[Copyright EFE with EFE]
Subject: Spanish news