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Garath Davies


Egeli Rasta

Garath Davies was told by a judge at the Old Bailey on Friday 11th January 2008 that he faced a minimum term of 23 years for killing Egeli Rasta.

Judge Richard Hawkins said he believed the attack had "sexual motivation and involved sexual conduct".

As Davies was taken down, Miss Rasta's boyfriend, who was in the public gallery, shouted: "Rot in hell."

Davies, 23, of Mitcham, south London, told a trial he had been chain-smoking cannabis and was "very stoned" on the day the 27-year-old Estonian died.

Miss Rasta went missing in July 2006 and her body was undiscovered for 12 days after she was killed.

Davies was found guilty at trial in November 2006 of murder and perverting the course of justice by burying the body to avoid detection. the jury were told that evidence pointed to a "sexual motive" for the killing. Detectives found a kitchen knife covered in blood at the home of unemployed  Davies, a house he shared with his mother.

The name "Gaz" was carved into the branch of a tree near where the naked body of Miss Rasta was found after police were alerted by a dog walker.

Davies, originally from Llanelli, South Wales, later told police: "I'm afraid I might have done it. I can't remember."

The court heard that Miss Rasta, who was "fit, athletic and quite strong", lived near Mitcham Common and would often jog and sunbathe there.

She disappeared on 4th July 2006, a day after working a shift at Harrods in Knightsbridge.

Mark Ellison, prosecuting, said Davies was "something of a loner" who spent much of his time on the common alone or with his black Staffordshire bull terrier Tyson.

Precisely what happened to Miss Rasta was unclear as her body lay undiscovered for 12 days and decomposed so badly that a pathologist was unable to establish the cause of death.

The victim's mother, Sirje, told the court in a victim impact statement that her daughter wanted to become a social worker and that "helping others would be her mission in life". "This horror will never end for me and my family," she added.

Davies has two previous convictions as a teenager for knife possession, at the time telling police he had the blades to defend himself from bullies.