Ex-partner found guilty of killing Portsmouth beautician Sarah Wellgreen

The former lover of missing mother-of-five Sarah Wellgreen has been found guilty of murder, more than a year after she was last seen alive.

Monday, 28th October 2019, 11:54 am
Updated Monday, 28th October 2019, 1:50 pm

The 46-year-old beautician had been living a ‘happy life with much to look forward to’ but disappeared without a trace in October 2018.

Despite extensive searches across a huge area, the body of the mother has never been found.

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Sarah Wellgreen (left) and Ben Lacomba (right) who has been found guilty of her murder. Picture: Family Handout/ Kent Police/PA Wire

The pair had split up in 2014 but still lived together at their home in New Ash Green, Kent, at the time of her disappearance.

On Monday, her ex-partner Ben Lacomba was convicted of murder despite his attempts to evade justice.

The 39-year-old, who stood in the dock wearing a dark suit, shirt and dark blue tie, showed no emotion as the guilty verdict was read out.

It took the jury three-and-a-half hours to reach its verdict.

Lacomba's trial at Woolwich Crown Court heard that he killed Ms Wellgreen in a ‘calculated manner designed to avoid detection, to leave no trace’ and to ‘remove her from his life forever’.

The couple met online in 2004 but by the time of her disappearance their relationship was marked by ‘tensions and problems’, the court heard.

They had split up but were still living under the same roof and it ‘appears that potential loss of that family home, that property, and his children motivated his actions’, prosecutor Alison Morgan QC told the jury.

Taxi driver Lacomba said he was asleep in bed on the night of the alleged killing.

The prosecution alleged that Lacomba switched off a CCTV system in the middle of the night and parked his car in an unusual spot in order to evade detection.

Giving evidence during the trial, Lacomba said it was ‘unusual and weird’ when he woke up one morning to find she was not at home.

A date for sentencing has not yet been decided.