Thursday, 20. June 2013 - 08:06
27. 06. 12. - 12:00
Prosecutors in Bulgaria have asked for life for a retired flight engineer from Scotland charged with the murder of a schoolboy aged 11.
Police in Vidin, Bulgaria, who were investigating the killing of Stanislav Mirchov on January 4 2012 said there was evidence that the youngster had been sexually assaulted before he was strangled to death. His body was dumped in an overgrown field where it was only found 18 days later.
A post-mortem confirmed evidence of sexual abuse but to date police said they had still not decided whether to add sexual assault charges to the murder charge that 71-year-old David Bell Bryson is facing.
The Scot has denied that the killing was sexually motivated and claimed he had wanted to take revenge on boy because he had tortured his dog. He said the fact that the boy died was an accident.
Bryson, who lived in a private property in the village of Lagoshevtsi, had originally denied being involved but was arrested after failing a polygraph test.
According to local media reports, Stanislav was passing Bryson's home to take food to an elderly neighbour when the pensioner grabbed him by the neck, dragged him to a nearby field and strangled him to death.
Police were able to fill in the details after Bryson carried out a re-enactment of the murder.
One neighbour told local TV: "The youngster was a lovely boy - he vanished taking food as a gift from his family to an elderly neighbour."
They said that the family was a large one and relatively poor but that they had always played an active part in village life and were well liked.
The Deputy District Prosecutor in the northwestern Danube city of Vidin, Vladislav Vlashev, said that despite the admission they would press for the maximum penalty because of the particularly cruel way in which the young boy was murdered.
It is expected that the defence counsel will ask for a short procedure and Bryson will plead guilty at the first hearing on July 10 in exchange for a lighter sentence to be served in Great Britain.
He has been refused bail because of the risk that he might flee the country. Police said that the Scotsman was educated in Germany and worked as an aviation mechanic, and settled in the village of Lagoshevtsi four years ago.
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