Restivo Convicted Of Elisa Claps Murder

An Italian court has convicted a man with a fetish for cutting off women's hair of the 1993 murder of a teenager, months after he received a life sentence in Britain for a similarly gruesome murder in Bournemouth.

The court in Salerno near Naples sentenced Danilo Restivo, who was tried in absentia, to 30 years in prison for the death of 16-year-old Elisa Claps, whose decomposed body was found last year on the roof of a church where she was last seen 18 years ago.

In June, the 39-year-old Restivo was sentenced in England to life without parole for killing and mutilating his neighbour Heather Barnett in Bournemouth in 2002.

The ritualistic murder - in which the mother of two was mutilated and strands of hair placed in her hands - echoed the Claps murder. Restivo, who is jailed in the UK, maintained his innocence.

Elisa Clap's mother Filomena issued an appeal after the verdict to Restivo to ''tell the truth'' about her daughter's death.

Restivo's lawyer, Marnio Marinelli, told reporters that they did not expect a guilty verdict, and refused further comment, the news agency ANSA reported.

The court will issue its reasoning within 90 days, at which time the defence can appeal.

Elisa vanished from her home town of Potenza, a regional capital about 225 miles south of Rome on September 12 1993 at the age of 16.

She was last seen in the Most Holy Trinity church in Potenza with Restivo, an acquaintance who later acknowledged that he had spent about 10 minutes in the church with her before leaving.

Her decomposed remains were discovered in a corner of a hard-to-reach rooftop garret on the Most Holy Trinity church in March 2010 by maintenance workers who had climbed to the roof to fix a leak.

Danilo Restivo