Peterborough: Killer's 'Accomplices' Stay Silent

28 January 2014, 15:15 | Updated: 28 January 2014, 17:37

Thorney Dyke

Two men accused of helping Peterborough serial killer Joanna Dennehy will not give evidence in their own defence, a court has heard.

Dennehy, of Orton Goldhay, Peterborough, has admitted murdering Lucasz Slaboszewski, 31, John Chapman, 56, and Kevin Lee, 48, whose bodies were found in ditches near Peterborough last year. 

She has also admitted the attempted murders of Robin Bereza and John Rogers, who she randomly selected and stabbed in the street in Hereford, and preventing the lawful and decent burial of all three murder victims. 

Two men, Gary Stretch and Leslie Layton, are accused of acting as her accomplices and are standing trial at Cambridge Crown Court.

Today Karim Khalil QC, acting for Stretch, told the court he would not take the stand to give evidence. 

Christopher Morgan, for Layton, said his client had made the same decision.

No other defence witnesses will be called. 

Closing the prosecution case, Andrew Jackson read out a telephone conversation between Stretch and his ex-partner and mother of his three children, Julie Gibbons, recorded while he was on remand in prison.

In it Ms Gibbons asked why Dennehy "did it''. 

Stretch responded: "Well she's just that way. 

You know what I mean, she's off her head.'' 

Ms Gibbons responded: "So then you should have run a mile.'' 

Stretch said: "Yeah I know, but you know about me, I was worried about you.'' 

The court has previously heard police interviews carried out with Layton, in which he said he was frightened of Dennehy.

Stretch, real name Gary Richards, 47, of Riseholme, Orton Goldhay, has denied three charges of preventing the lawful burial of all three men and two counts of attempted murder. 

Layton, 36, of Bifield, Orton Goldhay, has denied perverting the course of justice and two counts of preventing the lawful burial of the bodies of Mr Chapman and Mr Lee. 

A third man, Robert Moore, 55, of Belvoir Way, Peterborough, has admitted assisting an offender and is also awaiting sentence. 

The case was adjourned with closing speeches expected to begin on Thursday.