Sadistic trio who kept woman as a torture slave are found guilty of murdering ... trends now
A trio of sadistic killers who kept a woman alive with sachets of ketchup as they enslaved, tortured and beat her to death have been found guilty of murder.
Ashana Studholme, 38, her boyfriend Shaun Pendlebury, 26, and friend Lisa Richardson, 44, all denied but were convicted of murder and preventing a lawful burial by an Old Bailey jury today after a three month trial.
Ms Spencer was once a 'voluptuous size 16' but she was reduced to 'skin and bone' by July last year.
Studholme befriended Ms Spencer and slowly took over her life and finances while Pendlebury moved into her flat.
Ms Spencer was forced to sleep under newspapers in the hallway at Studholme's home.
Shakira Spencer was found dead in her flat in Hanwell, west London, after a neighbour raised the alarm
The Old Bailey previously heard that 35-year-old was burned with a makeshift blowtorch, had boiling water poured over her, was fed only sachets of ketchup and was forced to sleep on newspapers in the hallway of one of the defendant's homes in Harrow
The killers treated her as her slave and enjoyed torturing her with a makeshift blowtorch and boiling water poured on her from a kettle.
When they had tired of their sadism, they bundled her into the boot of a car and drove her back to her flat at Lambert House, Holbeck Row, where Ms Spencer was locked in a cupboard while they waited for her to die.
They then moved her to a bunk bed where the body was left rotting for two weeks.
Prosecutor Allison Hunter, KC, said earlier: 'For whatever was their cruel, sadistic motive, these three defendants tormented, tortured, starved, burned, and eventually battered Shakira to death.
'Over the months leading up to her murder the defendants, primarily Studholme and Richardson subdued and dominated Shakira so totally that she was under all of their complete control.
'She was isolated from everyone she had previously known, her freewill seemingly sapped and stolen from her.
'They stole her self-respect, her finances, took over her flat, treated her like a slave, ordering her wake up in the early hours of the morning to clean their houses, sending her to the shops to do their errands, feeding her only on sachets of ketchup and then in circumstances of unbelievable depravity, boasted about and on occasion photographed and filmed what they did and were intending to do to her.
'This was the slow erosion of a human being over many months culminating in what the Crown says was a sustained, frenzied and almost feral attack over several days - scalding her, blowtorching her, hitting her head, whipping her with belts and hitting with fists and a glass bottle.
'When that didn't kill her outright she was bundled into a boot, taken to her own flat and locked in a cupboard and denied even food or water until she died.
'She was then left to rot in a bed as they attempted to mop up anything showing their involvement.
'Shakira Spencer was clearly perceived by these defendants as a species less than human.'
Jurors had deliberated for nearly 18 hours to reach verdicts and were excused by the judge from jury service for life due to the 'harrowing nature' of the case.
Ms Spencer (pictured) had been fed just sachets of ketchup as she was enslaved, tortured and shrunk to 'skin and bone', the Old Bailey has heard
Ashana Studholme, 38, her boyfriend Shaun Pendlebury, 26, and friend Lisa Richardson, 44, all denied but were convicted of murder and preventing a lawful burial by an Old Bailey jury today after a three month trial (pictured: Hanwell)
Devi Kharran, senior Crown prosecutor, said: 'Evidence presented during the trial proved that Pendlebury, Studholme and Richardson exercised twisted and sadistic control of Shakira Spencer over an extended period.
They spun a web of lies in every effort to hide their actions. 'The CPS built a strong case against them using video footage filmed by the defendants themselves, mobile phone evidence, forensic analysis, and a confession from Shaun