1. ITV Report

Man denies ex-wife's kidnap and murder

Vitalija Baliutaviciene Photo: ITV Anglia

A man's gone on trial accused of kidnapping his ex-wife in Peterborough, killing her and burying her body in Poland.

Jurors at the Old Bailey in London were told that Rimas Venclovas was determined that Vitalija Baliutaviciene, 29, would "fulfil her destiny" to die and be buried by him.

Her death followed a violent marriage and physical abuse which carried on after they were divorced, said Maureen Baker, QC, prosecuting.

Venclovas was arrested twice by police in Peterborough after attacking Ms Baliutaviciene, but absconded to his native Lithuania each time after being given bail.

He then went to elaborate lengths to return to the UK undetected, including growing his hair long and sporting a moustache. He even bought a new vehicle which would not be linked to him so he could come back and kill the woman who had rejected him, it is alleged.

Venclovas, 47, denies kidnap and murder charges alleged to have been committed in August last year.

Miss Baker said Miss Baliutaviciene had left her home in Burmer Road and was walking to work at 5.15am on August 12 last year, when her abduction was captured on CCTV.

She said: "It shows her being overpowered and taken away by someone.

"Then she vanished until the 30th of October when a man picking mushrooms in a field in western Poland came across a shallow grave containing her remains.

"She died suddenly and violently as the result of manual strangulation.

"The prosecution say her former husband is responsible for both her abduction and murder - and in doing so, did exactly what he had always promised her he would."

Miss Baker said Venclovas had tried to control his former wife even from abroad. He had threatened to take away their son if she did not return to him, she said.

He had tried to strangle her twice in the year before she died. After fleeing to Lithuania and returning on the first occasion, the Crown Prosecution Service had decided he would not be charged.

"Subsequent events have called that decision into question," added Miss Baker.

In February last year, he attacked her again and began to strangle her.

Miss Baker told jurors: "He told her she would be buried. He told her her destiny was for her to be killed by him."

After fleeing Britain again, he changed his name, grew his hair and a moustache, and bought a camper van from which he removed the rear seats.

"In order to deliver the destiny he had promised Vitalija, to kill her, he had to devise a way of returning to the UK without being detected," added Miss Baker.

The trial continues.