Investment banker Rurik George Caton Jutting, found guilty in gruesome murders of two Southeast Asian sex workers
31-year-old Rurik Jutting tortured, raped and murdered Sumarti Ningsih, 23, and Seneng Mujiasih, 29, in 2014
He dismembered Sumarti and stuffed her body in a suitcase in his Hong Kong apt
Court rejected his defense of diminished responsibility and sentenced him to serve two concurrent life sentences
Rurik Jutting, British stock trader from a privileged background turned into evil serial killer in the Asian financial capital. Convicted of sadistic murder of two sex workers
A British stock trader who killed two Indonesian women in Hong Kong after three days of drug and alcohol fueled torture and rape has been found guilty of their murders.
Rurik George Caton Jutting, 31, an employee at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, killed Sumarti Ningsih and Seneng Mujiasih in 2014 after meeting them at bars in the city’s red-light district.
The slayings in 2014 and disclosures as the case developed highlighted Hong Kong’s significant inequality as well as the decadent lifestyles of elements of the territory’s expatriate elite.
The nine-person jury returned unanimous verdicts against Rurik Jutting after a two-week trial in the High Court. He was sentenced to serve two concurrent life sentences behind bars.
Sumarti Ningsih (L) and Seneng Mujiasih (R), both murdered in a horrific manner by Rurik Jutting in his Hong Kong apartment, in 2014.
Jutting bowed his head briefly, but otherwise showed no emotion after the verdict was read out to a packed courtroom. He was given an automatic mandatory life sentence, attracting brief applause from supporters of the victims.
While he has the right to an appeal, his defense lawyer indicated ahead of the verdict that Jutting would request a transfer to a British prison to serve out his sentence there.
In a statement his lawyer asked to be read into the court record, Jutting said he was haunted by his actions, was sorry and accepted the verdicts as “just and appropriate punishment.”
“My actions were horrific even by the standards of homicide trials,” Jutting said in a written statement read to the court by his lawyer. “The jury has delivered a verdict that I cannot and do not have any objection to.
“I remain haunted daily by my actions. The evil I have inflicted can never be remedied by me, neither words nor actions.”
Rurik Jutting enjoyed a hedonistic life style in Hong Kong, he once boasted of spending over $1 million on drugs and alcohol over a two year period.
The Cambridge University educated investment banker, was convicted of first Killing 23-year-old Sumarti Ningsih and then killing 29-year-old Seneng Mujiasih days later. The two women originally came to Hong Kong as foreign maids but ended up as sex workers.
To the two victims’ families he expressed remorse: “I am sorry, I am sorry beyond words.”
As statements from their families were then read out by the prosecutor, Jutting stared at the floor.
Rurik Jutting with his last girlfriend Joanna Mendoza
Jutting through his British defense attorney, Tim Owen had claimed diminished responsibility for the killings, which he filmed on his iPhone. Owen had argued his client suffered from a personality disorder, willing to plead to a lesser charge of manslaughter and impeding proper burial for Sumarti, but the court rejected this plea.
Jurors were shown graphic smartphone video clips taken by Jutting of his 72-hour long torture of Sumarti, which the judge deemed too graphic for the public to view. He slit her throat and then nearly decapitated her when she didn’t die immediately, according to facts agreed upon by both the prosecution and defense. He then stuffed her body inside a suitcase that he left on the balcony of his upscale apartment near Hong Kong’s famous Wan Chai red-light district.
Jutting had planned to torture Mujiasih with about $900 worth of tools and sex toys he had bought hours before. But he killed her when she spotted a gag in his apartment and wouldn’t stop screaming, according to the two sides.
This bloody knife was entered into evidence during the trial
A vigil for Sumarti Ningsih, left, and Seneng Mujiasih
Handing down two life sentences, Judge Michael Stuart-Moore said: “During this trial we have been made to dredge the very depths of depravity during the three days of torture he subjected his first victim to. Jutting showed no emotion as the judge recounted the details of his crimes, his head tipped slightly to one side, eyes staring at the floor.
Judge Stuart-Moore called the case “one of the most horrifying murder cases to come to the courts in Hong Kong.”
Remarking on Jutting’s priviledged upbringing, saying his salary and job were things most people “only dream of”, the judge rejected the defendant’s apology: “There are insufficient superlatives to describe the cruelty” that Jutting inflicted on Ningsih and planned for Mujiasih, he said, adding that the defendant had not shown “one shred of remorse”Judge Stuart-Moore said.
“He described himself as evil and a monster, and neither is adequate to describe the true nature of what happened. The defendant is the archetypal sexual predator,”and cited testimony from an expert psychiatric witness who said Jutting would likely commit sexual violence again.
Seneng Mujiasih’s parents, Juminem and Mujiharjo.Seneng was the economic mainstay of her family
The judge said his sentencing remarks were aimed at notifying authorities in Britain, who must hold their own sentencing hearing if his transfer is granted, of the “immense danger” Jutting poses if he is allowed out of prison.
Statements from the two victims families were read by the prosecution before sentencing detailing the poverty in which the two women grew up and their hardships imposed in the past two years, since their demise.
“The family regrets allowing her to work,” the Mujiasih family statement said. “If she did not leave, she would have not died.”
Sumarti Ningsih’s parents Suratmi and Ahmad Kaliman with their 7-year-old grandson, Muhammad Hafidz Arnovan, back home in Indonesia
In their own statement, Ningsih’s family said: “This incident is a tragedy for our family. It’s hard for us to accept this reality.”
Both families called for maximum punishment for Jutting.
After the verdict, Ningsih’s brother, Suyit Khaliman, said the family welcomed the verdict and was grateful that Jutting was given the maximum penalty under Hong Kong law.
“Justice finally has been upheld after two years,” Khaliman said. “The sentence is still incomparable to the pain that is felt by us who lost Ningsih in such a terrible way.”
Khaliman said the family, from Central Java province, has suffered financially and emotionally since the death of Ningsih, who has a son, now aged 7.