British banker’s defence cites sexual disorder in Hong Kong double murder trial

Hong Kong murder trial: The prosecution team showed the graphic and shocking footage last week and highlighted British banker's consumption of abnormally large doses of cocaine.

By: Reuters | Hong Kong | Updated: October 31, 2016 11:01 am
hong kong murder trial, british banker murder trial, hong kong murder trial, hong kong murder, british man murder, indonesian women murdered, hong kong british banker, world news Hong Kong murder trial: In this 2014 file photo Rurik Jutting, a British banker, sitting in a prison bus arrives at a court in Hong Kong. (Source: AP Photo/File)

British investment banker Rurik Jutting was a narcissistic sexual sadist, according to a British psychiatrist presenting evidence in his defence against charges of murdering two Indonesian women in his Hong Kong apartment. Opening Jutting’s defence, lawyer Tim Owen called on Dr Richard Latham, a consulting forensic psychiatrist with Britain’s National Health Service who has worked on between 50 to 75 similar cases.

Latham told the Hong Kong court that Jutting suffered from recognised disorders from cocaine and alcohol abuse on top of his other personality disorders of sexual sadism and narcissism. Jutting, a Cambridge University graduate who previously worked at Bank of America Corp in Hong Kong, has been accused of murdering Sumarti Ningsih, 23, and Seneng Mujiasih 26, two years ago.

The women’s bodies were found in Jutting’s luxury high-rise Hong Kong apartment. Ningsih’s mutilated body was found in a suitcase on the balcony, Mujiasih’s was found inside the apartment with wounds to her neck and buttocks, the prosecutor told the court. Jutting has pleaded not guilty to murder on grounds of “diminished responsibility”, but guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter. The trial has attracted international scrutiny since it began last week with media flying in from Britain to cover the case and the court room perpetually full.

Jutting who also studied at the prestigious Winchester College, one of Britain’s most famous and oldest private schools, captured hours of footage on his iPhone of him torturing Ningsih. He also filmed rambling monologues where he discussed the murders, binged on cocaine and explained his violent sexual fantasies. “The thing I never had before in a case is the video recordings he made himself because they give you a direct view of what he was like around the time of these two killings,” Latham told the court.

The prosecution team showed the graphic and shocking footage last week and highlighted his consumption of abnormally large doses of cocaine. Video evidence shown in the courtroom showed Jutting telling police he was consuming 10 packs of cocaine a day – each costing HK$1,000 and that he ingested up to 20 grams of cocaine just before the second murder. The defense and prosecution were largely in agreement over the physical evidence, but the dispute may lie in psychiatric and psychological evidence provided by the defense to determine whether it was a case of murder or manslaughter.

Murder carries a mandatory life sentence, while manslaughter carries a maximum of life though a shorter sentence can be set. Dressed in a pale blue shirt, Jutting was clean shaven with short cut hair, looked attentive during the session. His loss of weight has been in stark contrast to initial court appearances when he looked heavily overweight and wore a thick dark beard. Jutting, a former vice president and head of Structured Equity Finance & Trading (Asia) at Bank of America, had expressed “job depression” in his series of filmed monologues that he termed the “narcissistic ramblings of Rurik Jutting.”