Wisbech factory worker accused of telling string of lies during murder investigation, court told

A FACTORY worker alleged to have murdered his neighbour was accused of telling a string of lies throughout police investigations, a jury heard yesterday.

Lithuanian Jolanta Dumciuviene, 38, was killed in her room at a shared house in Milner Road, Wisbech, on May 4 last year and was not found by friends for three days.

During that time fellow Lithuanian Tomas Acas, 26 – who denies murder – is alleged to have moved her body from the floor of her bedroom to underneath her mattress. Her body was found the next day.

A pathologist told jurors last week that Mrs Dumciuviene – who moved to England in 2007 – died as a result of “severe trauma to the chest” after suffering rib fractures, “damage to her throat” and internal bleeding.

Prosecutor David Matthew told Cambridge Crown Court yesterday that Acas had left his shift at a Del Monte canning factory in Wisbech on May 6 last year without telling his supervisor.

Mr Matthew said: “At around 2am on Thursday (May 6) he said he went home because he didn’t feel well.

“You notice that nobody at work was told he was so ill that he had to leave. It’s no coincidence that on the Thursday morning people were starting to notice that Jolanta hadn’t been to work for a few days.

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“He told friends he had a bad back and called someone later that day saying he needed a thermometer because his head was hot.

“Was this something he had discussed in advance to give him some sort of excuse for leaving work?”

The jury were then shown CCTV footage of Acas walking through Wisbech market place later on that Thursday, a time where Acas had told police that he was at home in bed.

“The CCTV footage shows a well man,” said Mr Matthew. “He wasn’t ill at all. He’s just made up a string of lies and I suggest on that Thursday he was trying to cover up whatever had happened on the Tuesday.”

The jury were also told that a text sent from Mrs Dumciuviene’s phone to a colleague on the Thursday, suggesting she would be back to work on Sunday, was probably sent by Acas.

Mr Matthew told the jury it was “very difficult to conclude” that anyone else other than Acas had sent the text message from Mrs Dumciuviene’s phone – she had been dead nearly two days before the text was sent.

It was also alleged that Acas was hoping to flee the country on Saturday May 8 and return to his native Lithuania.

During investigations police also claim to have found an MP3 player in Acas’ room which had been linked to the murder victim’s laptop.

The factory worker also lied about using the murdered woman’s bank card, Mr Matthew said, even though it became blocked on a number of occasions for incorrect PIN entry.

He told jurors that they had to take into account the fact he had “lied again in the course of a murder enquiry about a fellow countryman” about the bank card even if he could suggest he was simply ashamed about stealing it. He then asked the jury to think about “what else is he trying to hide”.

Vital DNA evidence also suggests that blood found on Acas’ flip-flops and trousers was that of Mrs Dumciuviene.

Acas – who has had no convictions in the UK or abroad – has given no evidence throughout the case and declined to answer any questions once more during yesterday’s hearing.

The case continues.

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