Court hears macabre details of Charlene Farrugia’s murder

Court told John Paul Woods had chopped body of missing Charlene Farrugia into four pieces to dispose of it

The compilation of evidence against John Paul Charles Woods started in court on Monday (Photo: ONE News)
The compilation of evidence against John Paul Charles Woods started in court on Monday (Photo: ONE News)

A court has heard how the man accused of murdering Charlene Farrugia had chopped the missing woman’s body into four pieces to get rid of it.

John Paul Charles Woods was earlier this month accused of murdering Farrugia in November 2008 and hiding her body, charges to which he pleaded not guilty. Farrugia’s body had been found inside a cave in the bastions outside Valletta in July 2019.

Woods, who had at the time been arrested for a hold-up in Gżira - a crime for which he eventually got a seven-year prison sentence - is understood to have confessed to the murder, indicating to the police where he hid the body.

The compilation of evidence against Woods started in court on Monday, with an officer from the police’s Criminal Investigations Department taking the witness stand and giving macabre details about the murder.

The officer said that Woods had, after he was arrested last year, admitted to having murdered Farrugia, saying he had stabbed her with a knife and choked her by covering her mouth with his hands.

He had then kept her corpse in his St Paul’s Bay flat for a brief period, before starting to receive complaints from neighbours about the smell.

At this point, he had decided to chop her body up into smaller parts and place them into sacks.

The officer said Woods told police he had cut the woman up into four pieces, and placed them in the sacks together with a cement mixture.

He had then, using his own car, taken them to a location outside Valletta, close to the Phoenicia Hotel, and hid them.

The officer went on to tell the court that Woods had mentioned a certain Jesmond Cassar, known as “It-Tito”, to the police. Cassar had been the person suspected by the police in 2008 of involvement in the murder. He was also the partner of the sister of Jonathan Attard, who was in turn Farrugia’s boyfriend.

In October 2019, Woods had implicated Cassar in Farrugia’s murder, however his version of events had been contradictory, and the police did not find evidence of Cassar’s involvement in the crime.

The court will continue hearing the case on Wednesday.

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