(AUCKLAND) Court Report: Grace Millane murder (unnamed for legal reasons) suspect ‘strangled her to death during rough sex – then went on Tinder date hours later’ court heard the British backpacker was found inside a suitcase ‘twisted in the foetal position’ but the defence claims the death, on either December 1 or December 2 – the date of Ms Millane’s 22nd birthday – was accidental ..trial continues #AceNewsDesk reports

#AceNewsReport – Nov.06: British backpacker Grace Millane was strangled to death during a sexual encounter with her alleged killer, the accused’s murder trial heard: On the opening day of the trial at Auckland High Court, Ms Millane’s father wiped aside a tear as he heard his daughter’s body was found twisted “in the foetal position” inside a suitcase: Her body was discovered a week after Ms Millane was reported missing following a Tinder date with the 27-year-old New Zealander now accused of her murder. He cannot be named for legal reasons: The defence claims the death, on either December 1 or December 2 – the date of Ms Millane’s 22nd birthday – was accidental:

(Image: PA)” MEN Newsdesk https://t.co/aHNG2DVdS8: “Grace Millane’s body was found inside a suitcase twisted into a foetal position, the court heard:
“British backpacker Grace Millane was strangled to death during a sexual encounter with her alleged killer, the accused’s murder trial heard.”………By Saffron Otter, https://www.facebook.com/saffronotterMEN • 6 November 2019

The 22-year-old woman from Essex was on a round-the-world trip after graduating from university when she arrived in New Zealand last November; The jury was told how Ms Millane and the defendant went to several bars in the capital on December 1, 2018, which ended with them going back to where the suspect lived; The Crown alleged that the defendant strangled Ms Millane during rough sexual intercourse at his apartment in the centre of the city.

The parents of Grace Millane – David and Gillian Millane (Image: Getty Images)

Crown prosecutor Robin McCoubrey said: “Strangling someone to death with your hands isn’t inadvertent – all of the evidence points away from an accident”…………….Referring to CCTV from the night, which captured Ms Millane up until she entered the apartment, he said they were ‘comfortable’ with one another’s company: And added: “Only two people know what happened in that room. One of them can’t tell us, the other one hasn’t told the truth about what happened.”

The defendant allegedly first told police that the pair met for a drink then parted ways, but later admitted they engaged in ‘rough sex’ involving biting and hitting which finished on the floor: He insisted he did not realise she had died, and had a shower before going back to bed…………….”‘I woke up the next day and saw that she was lying on the floor. I saw that she had blood coming from her nose’,” Mr McCoubrey quoted the defendant.

The prosecution claimed phone records showed the male had looked at online pornography multiple times after Ms Millane had died and took seven intimate photographs of her body: The records also allegedly showed he had searched online for “the hottest fire”, “large bags near me” and “Waitakere Ranges” – where her body was later found in the suitcase – before going on another Tinder date later that day……………He also hired a professional carpet cleaning device to remove stains of her blood.

“If something had gone wrong, or someone fell unconscious and it was an accident, you’d expect someone to call for emergency assistance,” Mr McCoubrey said: “But (the accused) had plainly gone to some lengths to break any forensic links between him and Ms Millane.” CCTV also showed the accused had bought the suitcase and later used a trolley to take it from his apartment to a hire car………..Ms Millane’s remains were found inside the suitcase in a shallow grave off Scene Drive on December 9.

Defence barrister Ian Brookie said Ms Millane “died as a result of what they consensually engaged in together”. The death happened during “an act designed to enhance her sexual pleasure” and with Ms Millane’s “knowledge and encouragement”.

The defendant wiped tears from his face as Mr Brookie added: “While his actions may have caused her death, he is not to blame.

“This death was an accident.”

A pathologist told the jury of seven women and five men that the cause of death was “pressure to the neck”

Detective constable Lewis Sin told the court that before Ms Millane’s body was forensically examined, it was taken to Auckland Morgue: He confirmed her body was “in the foetal position” and she had been wearing black nail polish, he added: Gillian Millane, Grace’s mother, clutched a tissue over her mouth as Mr Sin said that earrings and a small metal tag inscribed with the word “freedom” were also found inside the suitcase.

The trial continues and is expected to last five weeks…….

#AceNewsDesk reports …………….Published: Nov.06: 2019:

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