How undercover police caught Britons' 'killers'

10th April 2006, Comments 0 comments

10 April 2006, LONDON — Police have released taped phone calls of two Venezuelan men who are accused of kidnapping and murdering a British couple who were house-hunting in Spain.

10 April 2006

LONDON — Police have released taped phone calls of two Venezuelan men who are accused of kidnapping and murdering a British couple who were house-hunting in Spain.

Anthony and Linda O'Malley, from North Wales, disappeared in 2002. Their bodies were found in graves dug in a cellar of a villa they had visited.

Jorge Real Sierra, 56 and Juan Antonio Velazquez Gonzales 40, denied kidnap and murder and are awaiting a verdict after a five-day trial in Alicante.

The court heard Real was held after offering to be a hostage negotiator.

The tapes released by North Wales Police feature in a BBC One Real Story programme to be broadcast on Monday evening.

The BBC reported they include conversations in English between a man with a Spanish or South American and an undercover British police officer.
 
They have moved these people two times, from one place to another - and they are confined to a room - these people can keep them there for a year if they want to

The trial in Alicante heard how a man fitting Real's description was seen using the internet cafe from where the e-mail offering help over the O'Malleys sent.

Subsequent e-mails and telephone calls were traced to Real, the court was told.

One of the recordings is of a man talking confidently about "Tony" and "Linda" and how they were being treated by the kidnappers.

He said: "I'm not particularly [a] friend of these people, the people that have them, you understand. They are just connections, you know.

"Then I asked 'what are you going to do with those people, are you going to kill them or going to bury them or what are you going to do to those people'?

"They have moved these people two times, from one place to another. And they are confined to a room. These people can keep them there for a year if they want to.
 
"These people are very, very, very, strange people."

The prosecution's case was that the O'Malleys were already dead, killed by Real and Velazquez.

It was claimed the men had lured the O'Malleys to the villa as part of a property scam, but had then bound and gagged them and chained them in the cellar.

The court heard that O'Malley, 43, had been forced at gunpoint to withdraw cash from a bank account the couple had opened in Benidorm as part of their search for a retirement home on the Costa Blanca.

Some six months after they had been reported missing, Spanish police discovered the couple's bodies buried in the cellar of the villa.

During the trial, the court heard that Mr O'Malley had died from asphyxia. He had injuries to his neck and had been gagged.

A plastic bag had been placed over his head and his hands and feet were bound.

Mrs O'Malley, 56, died from a heart attack brought on by the stress of her ordeal, the court was told.

The two Venezuelans deny the charges against them and the trial judges are expected to deliver their verdict in the next two weeks.

Real Story is screened at 20.30pm (19.30 BST) on Monday on BBC1.

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Subject: Spanish news

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