A wealthy British couple allegedly killed their nanny and then burned her body in a backyard bonfire, the Guardian reports.
Sabrina Kouider and Ouissem Medouni have been charged with the murder. Authorities reportedly believe the killing took place on or sometime before Sept. 20 in southwest London.
The badly torched corpse was discovered in the couple’s garden and authorities have not yet released an official ID of the body, which was reportedly burned beyond recognition. A positive identification is expected after a medical examination is complete.
But multiple press reports name the victim as Sophie Lionnet from northeast France, who had reportedly worked for the couple as a nanny.
The body was found Wednesday evening after parents walking their kids home from school told authorities about a massive fire and “foul-smelling smoke” emanating from Koider and Medouni’s $1.2 million home, reports state.
“My young son called out, ‘If you are having a barbecue, are we allowed to come?’” a neighbor told the Daily Mail.
“I told him, ‘no that’s not a barbecue, that’s a bad smell.’ I thought they may be burning leaves.”
Kouider, 34, a designer and makeup artist, is the ex-girlfriend of Mark Walton of the band Boyzone.
She and Medouni, 40, were arrested Friday and are scheduled to appear in court on Sept. 26.
Lionnet had been sharing a home with the family for about a year to care for Kouider’s 6-year-old son and 3-year-old daughter. The Daily Mail reports that the couple paid Lionnet just $68 per month for her work.
She had reportedly come to London to learn English but had troubles living there, according to a friend who spoke with the Daily Mail.
“Sophie had been unhappy for a long time, so unhappy she left to stay with one of her few friends for two nights last month,” the friend said.
“She had finally decided to go home, though, and had just asked her mum to send her £40 so she could afford the fare. She was supposed to have gone back on Monday. She never arrived.”
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