Sunday 19 November 2017

Body-in-suitcase murderer confessed in suicide note

Gareth Naughton

THE boyfriend of a Malawian student whose body was found stuffed into a suitcase on a Dublin street, admitted to murder before taking his own life.

Jason Dube's confession came in a suicide note found by British police beside his body, three days after Rudo Mawere's body was discovered at St David's Terrace, Blackhorse Avenue, in Dublin 7, on January 29 this year.

Dublin Coroner's Court heard yesterday that Ms Mawere (26), who had been living in a flat on the Leinster Road in Rathmines, Dublin 6, had been seeing Dube for several months before her death but flatmate Charity Namalele said she was unhappy.

"She told me that Jason was telling her lies and she was going to end the relationship," Ms Namalele told Ms Mawere's inquest yesterday.

Ms Mawere arranged to meet Dube at his flat, on Aughrim Street in Dublin 7, on Saturday, January 28, so he could pay back an outstanding €110 he owed her from an original debt of €160.

Ms Mawere rang her flatmate at around 3pm that afternoon.

Ms Namalele added: "She said to me: 'All I want is for him to give me my money and then it's over. I am going to go back to his house and get my money'."

Ms Mawere's body was found the next day at around 8.30am, inside a suitcase left beside a row of bins. She was clothed and a black plastic bag had been wrapped around her head.

According to state pathologist Dr Michael Curtis, Ms Mawere died as a result of strangulation. There were no ligature marks and bruising on the neck indicated that the strangulation had most probably been manual.

Murder

Gardai immediately launched a murder investigation. As well as the site where Ms Mawere was found, another crime scene was established at Dube's flat.

Sergeant Kevin Daly said that CCTV footage showed Ms Mawere making her way through town before arriving at the flat at around 3.30pm. Dube went into town, where he bought the suitcase that Ms Mawere was found in later. He was then seen leaving the house at around 8.30pm dragging a heavy bag.

Taxi driver Mark Wosser told the court that he was flagged down by a man struggling with a bag on Aughrim Street around that time. He helped the man lift the bag into the boot of the car and then they drove about 400 yards up the road to Blackhorse Avenue. "He was acting very normally. He was leaning back into the passenger seat. He seemed very relaxed," Mr Wosser said.

However, he said Dube seemed anxious when they lifted the bag from the boot. Dube was later seen catching a bus to Belfast. Gardai were trying to track him down when he was found hanged by Kent police. A suicide note was found at the scene. Inspector Tim McCarthy said that it was to the "effect that he had murdered someone in his flat" but it did not name the victim.

The jury returned a verdict of unlawful killing.

Speaking outside the court, Ms Mawere's brother-in-law Madloitso Thom said: "The family was devastated after hearing that their daughter is no more. She came to Ireland to study. She was a cheerful person, she liked to chat and most of all I remember she was a part of our family and used to take care of my children back home in Malawi."

Irish Independent

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