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Murder accused of ‘falsified will after woman’s headless body was dumped’

A woman killed a vulnerable churchgoer and dumped her headless corpse over 200 miles away before forging her will to inherit her estate, a court has been told.

Jemma Mitchell, 38, who had worked as an osteopath in Australia, had allegedly failed to extort £200,000 from 67-year-old Mee Kuen Chong to pay for repairs to her run-down home in Willesden, north-west London.

After Ms Chong changed her mind about the cash gift, Mitchell killed her and disposed of her remains during a 500-mile round trip to Salcombe in Devon last June, sources say.

She then set about forging a will on her computer so that she could inherit most of Ms Chong’s fortune, prosecutors claim.

The forged will was discovered during a search of the defendant’s home, Deanna Heer KC told jurors at the Old Bailey on Wednesday.

Ms Chong’s real will – to leave her home to her church, the rest of the family and to charity – was found at the victim’s home in Wembley, north-west London, the Old Bailey was told.

Ms. Heer told the jury: “In this case, the motive is clear: money.

“A large sum of money was needed to complete repairs to the defendant’s home and in Mee Kuen Chong the defendant found someone she believed she could get, if not while she was alive then by forging her will after she was killed had you.”

Prosecutors said Mitchell killed Ms Chong at the victim’s home on June 11 last year – after taking a large blue suitcase.

Ms. Chong suffered a fractured skull, “indicative of an impact with a hard tool or weapon,” she said.

Ms. Heer continued: “After killing or at least mortally wounding the deceased, she had to get rid of her body and put it in the blue suitcase.

“That’s why when she left it was so much heavier than when she arrived and that’s why the defendant traveled over 500 miles to Salcombe on 26 June 2021 and took it with her. And so she drove to the area where the mutilated body of the deceased was to be found the next day.”

The jury saw images of Ms. Chong’s clothed body and head after they were found about 10 meters apart in the forest.

The court was also shown CCTV footage allegedly recording the defendant’s activities after the murder.

At 1:13 p.m. on June 11, Mitchell was caught on camera walking from Ms Chong’s home with a suitcase that appeared “much heavier” than when she arrived, Ms Heer said.

She also dragged another suitcase that belonged to Ms. Chong and allegedly contained documents related to her financial affairs.

Later that day, Mitchell was being treated at St Thomas’s Hospital for a broken finger and claimed she locked it in a car door – which prosecutors said was a lie.

When Mitchell learned from Ms Chong’s lodger that she was missing, he allegedly told him “she was staying with family friends for a year to clear her head … somewhere near the ocean,” the court was told.

The defendant reportedly rented a car on June 26 and gave the registered phone number to a neighbor who died earlier in the year.

Mitchell collected the hired Volvo and was allegedly caught by CCTV stowing the large blue suitcase in the boot before heading to South West England. The Volvo was spotted on CCTV in a garage in Marlborough, near the south Devon coast.

Footage showed the passenger-side tire “shredded” and the car nearly collided with a forecourt display, jurors were told.

Mitchell borrowed a customer’s phone to call a salvage company and said she had come to Salcombe for a “scenic drive”.

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