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Man found guilty of murder and arson

News   •   Aug 09, 2017 17:33 BST

[Image: Jason Marshall]

A man who killed his victim in his own home after gaining entry for a sexual assignation, then set his flat on fire to cover his tracks has been found guilty of murder at the Old Bailey today, Wednesday, 9 August.

Jason Marshall, now aged 28 (11.08.88), was also convicted of arson.

The jury heard how Marshall set up a rendevous via a gay dating site with Peter Fasoli, 58, at his Ealing home, and tortured him for a prolonged period before suffocating him. He then committed arson in a bid to hide the evidence of the brutal murder and stole his victim's credit card using it to flee by plane to Italy a few days after the murder.

Mr Fasoli died on Monday, 7 January 2013 after he was brought out of his burning flat in Rubens Road, Northolt.

Police, the London Ambulance Service (LAS) and London Fire Brigade (LFB) attended after being called just before 01:00hrs in the morning. The case was originally treated as non-suspicious, following an investigation by LFB and police which concluded the fire was accidental, with the most likely cause a faulty light bulb.

A forensic pathologist who examined Mr Fasoli's body found no evidence of any third party involvement and the inquest held at West London Coroner's Court on 16 August 2013 returned a verdict of accidental death.

However, around a year later, in autumn 2014, Mr Fasoli's nephew decided to collect the hard drive of his uncle's computer, which was being stored on behalf of the family with other belongings that had survived the fire by a friend in Yorkshire.

His nephew knew his uncle had been interested in the family tree and hoped to find research preserved on the computer system. Instead, he discovered a number of videos featuring his uncle taking part in sexual activities with other men - including the horrific seven hour film of the encounter with Marshall. Mr Fasoli had unwittingly captured his own murder on the web camera that he had on his computer in the living room.

The film, shown to the jury in court, showed Marshall arriving kitted out with generic police accessories he had purchased on the Internet, and he and Mr Fasoli chatting and then engaging in what appeared to be consensual role playing based on an 'interrogation' before Marshall initiated what became a prolonged and violent domination of Mr Fasoli culminating in his murder. This included threatening him at knifepoint, and forcibly injecting him on multiple occasions. Classic FM radio station is playing throughout.

The audio captures the sounds at the end of the film of Mr Fasoli shouting out to Marshall after his head has been covered and he has been pulled off the bed and out of view of the camera. Marshall remains impervious as he continues to ignore his victim's increasing and visible distress. After Mr Fasoli had stopped making any noise at all, Marshall left him lying on the floor and calmly smoked a cigarette before gathering his belongings.

The web camera lead then appears to be pulled out and the sound can be heard of Marshall splashing a liquid around and flicking a lighter. A short time later Marshall is heard leaving the flat and the smoke alarm activates. The next morning he sent a message to Mr Fasoli via the same dating site apologizing for not having turned up the night before in a further attempt to cover his tracks, before using Mr Fasoli's bank card to withdraw hundreds of pounds. The day before he fled to Italy he sent further messages accusing Mr Fasoli of 'ignoring' him.

Later enquiries showed that Marshall had contacted and met Mr Fasoli on at least one occasion in the weeks before 7 January, and had led Mr Fasoli to think that on the night of the murder he would be bringing another young man along to join them for the evening.

Once the hard drive found by Mr Fasoli's nephew and given to West Yorkshire Police was passed to the MPS, the Met's Homicide and Major Crime Command launched its investigation into Mr Fasoli's murder on 10 November, 2014.

The MPS formally informed the Coroner of this development. Following enquiries, officers identified Marshall as the key suspect. Police discovered that Marshall was in prison in Italy in late 2014, having been convicted and jailed for a murder and subsequent attempted murder of two men in Rome just weeks after he fled the UK. These also took place in the context of sexual encounters.

A European arrest warrant was obtained, and on Wednesday 15 February, officers travelled to Heathrow Airport to meet the flight Marshall was returning to the UK on. He was arrested and later that same day charged with the murder of Mr Fasoli.

Detective Inspector James Stevenson, of the Homicide and Major Crime Command, said:

"We are pleased that today's verdict has brought Marshall to account for the brutal killing of Peter. This was a cold blooded attack, during which Marshall cynically gained the trust of a vulnerable older man to get entry into his home, then subjected him to a horrific and prolonged ordeal and ruthlessly ignoring Peter's cries for help knowing he was fighting to stay alive. Marshall then did everything he could to evade being brought to justice.

"We would like to thank Peter's family for the determination and strength they have shown in assisting us throughout this complex and challenging investigation."

A date for sentencing awaits.