She has become the first woman in England to be handed a life sentence on television after being found guilty of murdering her friend and dumping her decapitated body.
Jemma Mitchell, 38, will serve at least 34 years in jail for killing 67-year-old Mee Kuen Chong at her London home in June last year.
Judge Richard Marks KC was broadcast handing down his sentence to Mitchell.
“I am driven to the conclusion that you are extremely devious,” he said. “There is the chilling aspect of what you did to and with her body after you killed her.”
Two weeks after the murder, Mitchell drove more than 200 miles to the seaside town of Salcombe, in Devon, where she left Chong’s decapitated and badly decomposed body in woods.
The prosecution said Mitchell befriended her victim, a widow and devout Christian, through a church group.
When Chong, also known as Deborah, backed out of giving her £200,000 to pay for repairs to her rundown £4m home, Mitchell killed her and forged a will to inherit the bulk of Chong’s estate, which was worth more than £700,000.
The judge told Mitchell: “You have shown absolutely no remorse and it appears you are in complete denial as to what you did, notwithstanding what in my judgment amounted to overwhelming evidence against you.
Mitchell, a self-styled healer and trained osteopath who posted online of her award-winning skill in human dissection, denied having anything to do with Chong’s death.
During the trial, jurors were shown CCTV footage of Mitchell arriving at Chong’s home in Wembley, north-west London, carrying a large blue suitcase on the morning of 11 June last year.
More than four hours later, she emerged from the property with the suitcase appearing bulkier and heavier. She was also carrying a smaller bag full of Chong’s financial documents, which were later recovered from Mitchell’s home.
Mitchell decapitated Chong and stored her body in the garden of the house she shared with her retired mother in Willesden, north-west London, the prosecution suggested.
On 26 June last year, she drove to Devon with Chong’s body in the boot of the car. It was found by holidaymakers beside a woodland footpath near Salcombe the next day.
After a police search of the area, her head was recovered a few metres from the body.
A postmortem was unable to ascertain the cause of death because of the level of decomposition but found skull fractures that could have been from a blow to the head.
Mitchell had grown up in Australia, where her mother worked for the British Foreign Office, and had set up an osteopathy business there before returning to the UK in 2015.
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