The Arrest

Crime Files

The Arrest

On admission, Victoria’s core temperature was so low doctors didn’t have any instruments with the capacity to record it.Dr Nathaniel Carey, the Home Office pathologist assigned to examine Victoria finds 128 injuries. He believes it to be,‘…the worst case of child abuse I’ve encountered'.

Marie-Therese is immediately arrested at the hospital and a murder investigation is launched. Police interview her but find her evasive and obstructive. She doesn’t co-operate in any way.

The following day, Carl is arrested at his flat. In his police interview, detectives are shocked by his openness. He talks of punching Victoria or of using a shoe to beat her. Other times, he’d take a bicycle chain to her body and head.During police interviews both claim that Victoria was possessed by demons.

Detectives search their flat for forensic evidence and find Carl’s tried to cover up evidence of the abuse by cleaning it with bleach. Despite this, they recover blood samples from the bath and the walls. And there’s blood on the furniture in the living room; And in the bedroom.

'We managed to recover many, many samples of blood. Now, given that they had already been cleaned I think that gave an indication of exactly what had happened there. She had been assaulted regularly and severely and she had bled and even though they had attempted to cover this up, it must have been in abundance.'

Detective Superintendent Keith Niven, Metropolitan PoliceIn the bins, they find the discarded tapes used to bind Victoria’s feet and wrists.They also find a passport in the flat which seems to confirm the dead girl as Anna. But detectives soon realise the photo in the passport isn’t that of the girl who’s lying in a London mortuary.They manage to track down and contact her real parents by establishing which family Marie-Therese targeted. Victoria’s parents then have to make the terrible 3,000 mile journey to identify their dead daughter.

Carl Manning and Marie-Therese Kouao are charged with the murder of Victoria Climbié.