Dutchman guilty of strangling English woman

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A Dutch engineer was found guilty on Friday of murdering his neighbour in England by strangling her, as the jury was told that he watched Internet porn of violence against women after he had killed.

Vincent Tabak, 33, had admitted manslaughter but denied he had murdered landscape architect Jo Yeates in the southwest city of Bristol in December.

Tabak argued he had merely placed his hands on the 25-year-old woman's neck to stop her screaming after he had tried to kiss her when she invited him in for a drink at Christmas.

But the jury delivered a majority guilty decision of 10-2 after failing to reach a unanimous verdict.

After the verdict, it was revealed that in the days following the attack, Tabak viewed pornography depicting violence against women. Police discovered explicit material on the computer at his flat.

Tabak dumped Yeates's body on the edge of a country road near Bristol. The body was discovered on Christmas Day, December 25.

The case dominated British news reports last Christmas.

Sentencing Tabak to serve at least 20 years in prison, the trial judge, Justice Field, said: "I think there was a sexual element to this killing."

Yeates died "in pain and fear" and her disappearance left her family suffering "seven days of agonising uncertainty", he added.

The Dutchman showed no sign of emotion as the verdict was delivered, but immediately sat down and put his head in his hands.

© 2011 AFP

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