The heartbroken parents of French nanny Sophie Lionnet say her killers should be ‘burned at the stake’, after the pair were found guilty of murder today.
Sabrina Kouider, 35, and Ouissem Medouni, 40, starved and beat the 21-year-old to death before torching her body in the garden in a grisly bid to destroy the evidence.
Following the pairs’ conviction yesterday, Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne, 48, told The Sun: ‘I’d like the death penalty.
‘I’d have them burned at the stake like Joan of Arc. Alive. That’s what they deserve. It’s maybe cruel but what they did was even more cruel.’
The heartbroken parents of French nanny Sophie Lionnet say her killers should be ‘burned at the stake’, after the pair were found guilty of murder today. Following the pairs’ conviction yesterday, Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne, 48, told The Sun : ‘I’d like the death penalty’
While Sophie’s father Patrick Lionnet, 56, added: ‘These people do not deserve to live.’
Their words came after a harrowing image of a fragile and gaunt Sophie was released yesterday, showing the nanny looking withdrawn and afraid.
The trial has heard how Kouider mistakenly convinced herself her nanny was in league with her ex, Boyzone founding member Mark Walton, and interrogated the au pair for information, ultimately killing her.
Kouider’s ex-boyfriend, Anthony Francois, described her as ‘fickle’ and a ‘lunatic’ who would lie, manipulate and target the weak.
Sabrina Kouider, 35, and Ouissem Medouni, 40, built a warped fantasy around music mogul and ex-Boyzone member Mark Walton and accused any Sophie Lionnet of spying for him
Mr Francois made a statement to police on 23 January this year, which reads: ‘She could be as lovable as she could be detestable.
‘There was no explanation for this change in her moods, she would often shout and become aggressive. Her behaviour was difficult, incomprehensible.
‘She would lie, her behaviour was strange, she was aggressive, sometimes she was violent and pulled the hair of girls on the street just because of a look.
‘She took advantage of persons who were weaker than her. She had a dual face, a dual personality. She was manipulative, she could charm and tell lies.’
The couple met at a funfair when Kouider was 18. French Algerian Medouni pursued her and they had a 17-year on-off relationship
The glamorous mother-of-two was born in Algeria but grew up with her mother in Paris, where she met her first love in the unlikely form of Ouissem Medouni.
At the age of 18, she had a summer job on a sweet stall at a funfair where she caught the eye of fellow French Algerian Medouni, who was five years her senior.
His ardent pursuit paid off, setting them up for a 17-year on-off relationship which ended acrimoniously in the dock of the Old Bailey.
In common with her other liaisons with men, it was dysfunctional, turbulent and unconventional, and marred by Kouider’s bouts of irrational jealousy and violence.
Prosecutor Richard Horwell QC tried to unravel their strange bond, suggesting it was a marriage of convenience which suited Kouider only until someone better came along.
Medouni was said to be weak and easily led, a perfect foil for Kouider’s domineering personality.
They both appeared keen to keep their relationship ambiguous, with Kouider regularly relegating Medouni to a relative or friend in public, rather than her life partner with an Islamic marriage certificate to prove it.
The trial has heard how Kouider came up with increasingly wild theories about Miss Lionnet
At first, Medouni provided some stability and security amid Kouider’s emotional turmoil, which, it was claimed, led to more than one failed suicide attempt.
When Kouider went to London to work as a nanny, Medouni followed.
She had turned her hand to pyramid selling for a telecommunications company when Mark Walton, of Boyzone fame, came into the picture.
She met him in 2011 at a NatWest bank in Notting Hill, west London and they started what he described as the ‘most turbulent’ relationship he had ever had.
He started supporting Kouider financially and moved in with her at a flat in west London in early 2012.
Kouider hired several nannies throughout her time at the flat, all of whom she accused of some wrongdoing, ranging from petty theft to trying to steal Walton away.
The paranoia which led to Miss Lionnet’s murder sprang from Kouider’s obsession with her ex-boyfriend Mark Walton, who gave evidence at the trial
Kouider was obsessed with her ex Mark Walton. He pictured, second from the right, on Ireland’s Gay Byrne show when he was a member of Boyzone
When he refused to buy at item for her shopping in Oxford Street she ran into the road shouting ‘Mr Boyzone has got no money.’
From mid 2012, the pair split, with Walton moving to Los Angeles, but he continued to support her financially.
Between September 2013 and February 2014 Walton sent £12,800 to Kouider for her rent at the south west London property where Ms Lionnet was killed.
In March 2014 Walton continued to stay in contact with Kouider via email, apologising for being late paying her rent and once sent her an email which declared: ‘I will love you to the day I die.’
But his love was not returned, and any chance of them reconciling withered away after Kouider launched a barrage of allegations against Walton, none of which have ever been proven.
She claimed he tried to kill her an in July 2014 he was arrested after Kouider continued making false allegations that Walton was harassing her.
The job as the couple’s nanny was Sophie’s first job and she didn’t have the money to get home
Kouider alleged he was hacking into her phones and email address, and that he or someone acting on his behalf had assaulted her to steal an iPad.
She also claimed he had ‘mistreated a cat’, when the couple never owned a pet. Walton was later released without charge.
She claimed Walton ‘used black magic to control her and there was nothing she could do about it’.
Kouider was the driving force behind the interrogations in which killer her nanny
After she split from the music mogul, Kouider went back to Medouni, who would come and go from their south London flat at will.
She helped with his French pancake stall and, at the time of her arrest, was hoping to get a fashion business off the ground with a show in central London hosted by a major charity.
Despite her grand plans, Kouider kept afloat by claiming benefits and accepting significant financial support from Mr Walton long after they split up.
When the handouts dried up, she racked up £20,000 in unpaid rent on her two-bedroom garden flat in the upmarket area in south-west London.
At the heart of her problems lay depression and a borderline personality disorder, creating a distorted view of the world, her trial heard.
Her character flaws fuelled an irrational obsession with Mr Walton entirely based on an alternative truth created in her mind.
She was so convinced that her ex-boyfriend was colluding with her nanny that she swept Medouni up into the fantasy too.
Frustrated and thwarted in her attempts to get to LA-based Mr Walton, she latched on to her naive young nanny as a soft target.
She was the driving force of the violent interrogations of Miss Lionnet, but claimed Medouni was responsible for her death in September last year.
A jury found her guilty of murder today and she faces a life sentence.
EXCLUSIVE – ‘I don’t want a charred body to be my last memory of Sophie’: Heartbroken father of murdered French nanny says he’s haunted by her death – and releases her touching childhood photos
The father of French nanny Sophie Lionnet says he is haunted by the death of his ‘irreplaceable’ daughter as her killers were today found guilty of her murder.
Fighting back his tears, Patrick Lionnet said: ‘I try to think of Sophie the last time I saw her – happy and smiling, but sometimes I cannot block out the horror.’
Looking through precious childhood photos of Sophie growing up, he said: ‘The picture of Sophie smiling in my house with the dog, telling me that she loves me and that she will miss me, has been replaced with the sound of my baby’s voice full of fear and thick with tears.
‘I have seen photos of her starved body – like something out of Auschwitz – that hardly resembled my precious child.
‘I don’t want the image of a charred body, a recognizable human nose and fingers to be my last memory of her.’
Mr Lionnet said he prefers to remember Sophie as a young girl (pictured) before she went to London where she was starved and tortured in the months leading up to her being drowned in the bath by her tormentors Kouider and Medouni
Sophie’s devastated father Patrick Lionnet, 56, a gardener, pictured with his daughter as a youngster, told MailOnline from his home in France that he is haunted by her death and that he doesn’t want her charred body to be his lasting image of her
Sophie was starved and beaten during her 14 months of looking after her killer Sabrina Kouider’s son and living at her home where she was paid £50 a week. She was tortured by French fashion designer Kouider and her partner Ouissem Medouni
Speaking from his home in France, Mr Lionnet said: ‘When I was in London [for the trial] I barely slept, maybe one or two hours a night. I have these terrible images in my head. I try not to think about what they did to Sophie but I have been through hell.’ Mr Lionnet wears the I love Dad t-shirt Sophie gave him for Father’s Day a couple of years ago
Mr Lionnet separated from Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne when his daughter was four years old but the couple have come together to support each other through the ordeal of the trial and shared a drink together as they waited for a verdict
In September last year Sophie was murdered by French fashion designer Sabrina Kouider, 35, and her partner Ouissem Medouni, 40, in the home in Wimbledon, south London, where she looked after Kouider’s young son.
Sophie was drowned in the bath before her body was burned in the garden. She had been starved and tortured in the months leading up to her death.
Kouider was obsessed with her ex-partner, Boyzone founder Mark Walton with whom she had a young son, and was convinced that Sophie was colluding with Walton and sleeping with him.
Both Kouider and Medouni blamed each other but the jury did bid not believe them and both were found guilty today at the Old Bailey.
The guilty verdict brings no comfort to Mr Lionnet, 56, who says he struggles to block out the sound of Sophie pleading for her life – which was played to the court – when he closes his eyes.
He tries not to think of her charred remains of her body burned in the back garden of the family home in London where she worked as an au pair.
Speaking exclusively to MailOnline Mr Lionnet, a gardener for the local authority, from Troyes, south of Paris, tells how he ‘went through hell’ during the Old Bailey murder trial.
‘I try not to think about what they did to Sophie but I have been through hell.
‘When I was in London [for the trial] I barely slept, maybe one or two hours a night. I have these terrible images in my head.
‘When I heard the audio of Sophie being tortured I cracked. I just couldn’t take it. I cannot forget the images of Sophie’s body that were shown in court.
‘They are not human, they are savages. They don’t deserve to ever get out of jail for what they did to Sophie. I don’t ever want to see them walking free on the streets. They deserve the severest punishment possible.’
Sitting in the garden of his modest home in France, Mr Lionnet proudly wears the ‘I love Dad’ t-shirt that Sophie gave him as a Father’s Day present a couple of years ago.
Around his neck he wears a pendant bearing Sophie’s face. Portraits of her are displayed all around his unfussy rural home. The birthday card Sophie sent him from London has pride of place on his mantelpiece.
He went on: ‘Sophie was my old child, my pride and joy. She was the spitting image of me when she was born and she will always be my baby, no matter how old she is. I don’t have much money but I spoiled her.
‘We are also very similar in character – a bit shy and reserved, but happy. She was always smiling.
‘I remember her smiling and laughing the last time I saw her just before she went to England. I thought going abroad would do her good, open up new horizons for her, so I encouraged her to go.
‘She always liked working with children so I thought she would be happy. I never had any idea she was in trouble.
‘It breaks my heart to know that in her final months she was abused, that she suffered in silence and that beaten so badly.’
In September last year Sophie was murdered by French fashion designer Sabriner Kouider, 35, and her partner Ouissem Medouni, 40, in the home in Wimbledon, south London, where she looked after Kouider’s young son
Sophie, pictured playing with the family dog while she was growing up in France, was drowned in the bath before her body was burned in the garden. She had been starved and tortured in the months leading up to her death
Mr Lionnet told how evil Kouider and Medouni had not only robbed him of his only child but of his future – walking his daughter down the aisle and the joy of becoming a grandfather.
‘They have not only stolen the life of my only child, so brutally and without remorse, they have also stolen my sleep, my happiness, my piece of mind, my future.
‘I will never have that moment of pride of seeing my baby girl dressed in white, with flowers in her hair and love and hope glistening in her eyes, as she takes my arm, to walk down the aisle to a man who would cherish her as much as I.
‘I will never hear my daughter say, ‘Daddy, you are going to be a grandfather’. I will never be called Granddad.’
He added: ‘What they did to my child is beyond comprehension and unforgivable.
‘The suffering they caused my young and impressionable daughter, our families and friends, is more than anyone should be forced to live with.
‘They have ruined everything that we held dear. They have murdered my daughter, who was dependent on them.
‘They burned her body so badly that she was unrecognizable. We have still not been able to lay Sophie to rest. We have not been granted closure. This nightmare doesn’t end for us.
‘We will carry the brutality of my daughter’s final moments in our hearts and souls for the rest of our lives.’
While Mr Lionnet separated from Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne when his daughter was four years old, he maintained a strong relationship with his little girl.
‘Sophie and I have always been close,’ he said. ‘She had more freedom when she was with me than with her mum.
‘She liked coming over. We would watch films and play video games together. She was friends with some of the other kids in the area.
Mr Lionnet finds comfort in looking at old pictures of his beloved only daughter Sophie growing up. He says that father and daughter were very close and that he was looking forward to her returning to France after working as a nanny in London
‘If we didn’t see each other every week it was because of my work or because she wanted to do something. It was not a big deal. We were there for each other. She loved children and playing with animals.
‘She studied childcare at school. But she had trouble finding a job. So, when this opportunity came up in London we thought it was a good thing.
‘Sophie came to see me before she went to London. She was happy.’
The young Frenchwoman set off for London in July 2016. Despite a meagre salary of just £50 per week, Sophie told her family she was looking forward to her foreign adventure.
Unable to top up her French pay-as-you-go mobile phone in the UK, the young nanny could not keep in regular contact with her family.
But 14 months after she left home she would be dead.
Mr Lionnet explained: ‘Sophie had a new phone and she couldn’t make international calls.
‘So, we talked to each other via Facebook.
A cheeky looking picture of young Sophie laughing on her father’s comfy chair during what looked like an idyllic childhood
‘She also wrote to me. She sent me a lovely Father’s Day card.’
However, Mr Lionnet told how he received a knock at his door in the early hours of the morning in September last year to tell him his daughter was dead.
He told MailOnline: ‘It was four o’clock in the morning when the police knocked on my door. It was still dark. They would not give me any details about what had happened to Sophie, only that she was the victim of a violent murder. They told me to contact the [French] Ambassador in London.
‘I couldn’t believe it. I was in shock. I went to the boulangerie like I always do to collect the bread and then I went to work.
‘I told a couple of colleagues that my daughter had been murdered. They couldn’t understand why I was at work. I was in shock.
‘I thought there must have been a terrorist attack. I prayed that they had got the identity wrong – that it was not Sophie.
‘Then that night I saw her face on the TV news. She was being treated like a piece of meat.
‘Her loss never leaves me. It’s worst at night. I went to see the doctor but I decided the best medicine was to go back to work. So I try to keep busy, it seems to help.’
Mr Lionnet flew to London to join his ex-wife Catherine before the verdict was reached today at the Old Bailey.
Speaking outside the Old Bailey she said: ‘It has been a nightmare. During the weeks of the trial I have had to listen to the terrible things that were done to Sophie. In the evenings I have to go on long walks to try to clear my head.
‘I walked along the banks of the Thames for hours, trying to forget about what I heard during the day.’
Harrowing audio tapes reveal terrified nanny’s ordeal as she was interrogated for days by murderous couple
Sabrina Kouider, 35, and Ouissem Medouni, 40, built a warped fantasy around music mogul Mark Walton and accused Sophie Lionnet of being in league with him.
Koudier recorded the brutal questioning sessions the couple held at their south-London home, as they quizzed the 21-year-old for information about Walton.
Police transcripts show how Miss Lionnet, who had never met Mr Walton, gave confused answers to the repeated questions as the couple became more enraged.
Below is excerpts from an audio file recovered from Koudier’s phone:
A pictured shows a starved and disorientated Sophie Lionnet two days before she was killed. Her employers and murderers, Sabrina Kouider and Ouissem Medouni, were convicted today
Medouni: Okay… Wait! We’re going to start again. So, everything you told Sabrina, why did you tell her all that?
Kouider: She was crying earlier on! She was crying and said to me, ‘I did something… and I can’t get myself to tell it to you. I am ashamed of myself. [Addressing Sophie] You did take him there! I have evidence, as well. Okay?
Medouni: Yes or no?
Lionnet: No, I don’t remember.
Lionnet (sounding scared or in tears): I have no recollection of going to someone else’s place with [child]?
(Loud crackling noise)
Kouider: You’re making fun of me, are you?
Medouni: Stop it!
Kouider: You’re making fun of me? You’re making fun of me?
Medouni: Stop it! Okay.
(A loud band with something metallic)
Kouider: Okay? …don’t make fun of me! No sweet talk! (Addressing Medouni) Because I told you she’s a monster. You have a monster there! I thought you were someone good!’
Medouni: Sit properly. You needn’t be scared. Okay?
Kouider: Exactly! Okay? Because, earlier on, you were crying and you said to me, ‘I did something very serious, and I am very ashamed of myself’. That’s what you told me. Yes, or no?
Medouni: And what’s that?
Kouider: Is it lie?
Medouni: What’s that?
Kouider: Is it a lie?
Lionnet (sounding scared and maybe in tears): I was scared!
Kouider: You were scared? You were scared? You lie as you breathe, because.. why did I scare you? Did I scare you?’
Lionnet: I was scared.
Kouider: What were you scared of? Scared of what? Scared of what? Because I was very, very, very nice to you! I was very, very, very, very, very nice to you!
Medouni: Stop shouting like this!… Go on! Scared of what?
Kouider: Scared of what? I had been too nice to her. I used to even tell her things….
Medouni: She said she was scared of you! Stop it, please! We…
Kouider: What were scared of? Okay. Sorry! Apologies!
Medouni: Scared of what?
Lionnet: I don’t know exactly.
Kouider: Scared of what? In any case, whether you speak or you don’t speak, at your trial, you will do so. You will be jailed. Because as far as I am concerned, I am not going to joke with you! Okay? Because, I am a nice person; okay? I’d really like to help you. You too must help me! Okay? If you want me to help you, you need to help me! Okay? You want us to help you? Then help us! Okay?
Kouider: I don’t think he abused you; you wanted it because he couldn’t do that with you. And whenever you come back to the house, I smell sex.
Medouni: …she smells sex.
Kouider: I smell it. I smell it. Where the house? Hurry up, where is the house? Hurry up hurry up, otherwise I will f****** make the call. Hurry up where is the house? Open your mouth where is the house?
Kouider: Open your f****** mouth. Where is the house? You don’t to say it. You don’t want to it. So you want to go to prison? Be ready it is either 40 years in prison or you leave. It is up to you. You have the choice. Think carefully about 40 years in prison. Close your eyes for one-minute ok and imagine yourself every day in a cage like an animal with other people inside. That’s not a laughing matter. With paedophiles and all the…
(Continuous bagging noise in the background)
Kouider: If you promise to tell me the truth and I later find out that it’s lie, I will not protect you. No more lies, I will not protect you, I swear on my life, Sophie. I will not allow any more lie.
Medouni: So, he asked you when you will be coming back. That’s the way he approached you. He doesn’t know you but sent a message through Facebook asking you when will you be coming back? It doesn’t make any sense.
Kouider: So he knew you.
Kouider: Yes, he knew you because he asked you when you will be coming back. He knew you. Please just say the truth and nothing apart the truth.
Medouni: You better know that we will not let you go back until we know the whole, whole, whole, whole truth and nothing but the truth. It’s up to you.
Kouider: Tell me, huh! Tell me. Do you know this girl? Do you know this girl, I am just asking? Do you know her? …(Inaudible) He was with you, even the best of the best, they are going to be checked, ok. Do you know this girl? Because, there is everywhere CCTV. Do you know this girl?
Lionnet: Huh, huh! Huh!
Kouider: Huh! Why do you take time in answering, huh? Why do you take time in answering? Why do you take time in answering, tell me, huh! Huh! Why do you take time in answering?
Kouider: You don’t know. Sophie, please compose yourself, get your strength back. You just ate. I just fed you, please, put yourself together and get your strength back and answer me. I forgave you
Kouider: I am with you Sophie despite everything, despite everything, after everything, everything, everything, everything, everything, and everything. I am not against you. Go on Sophie. Why do, why do you take time to answer my question?
The interrogations took place at the couple home in south London before Sophie’s death
Kouider: Okay, how many of… did he give you for me? How many did he give you? Yeah? How many lozenges did he give you to put in the glass with tap water?… (Inaudible) free? You want to free yourself? Yeah? You want to free yourself? So do free yourself! Go ahead! Go ahead Sophie! How many did he give you? Where did you put them? In tea? In water?
Kouider: Okay. How many?
Lionnet: (Faint, hardly audible voice)
Kouider: Okay, but how many did he give you?
Medouni: Each time he came, you put one in?
Kouider: Before coming…
Medouni: Well, before.
Nanny’s horrific murder has chilling echos of other ‘folie a deux’ killings
The murder of Sophie Lionnet bears all the hallmarks of a psychosis known as folie a deux.
Folie a deux, or ‘madness of two’, is defined as a delusion shared from one individual to another.
Depressive and borderline personality Sabrina Kouider was the driving force and weak Ouissem Medouni the willing party.
Even as the true facts were laid bare in court, the pair refused to accept what they had done was the product of their warped fantasy.
Polly Chowdhury (left), 35, and her lesbian lover Kiki Muddar, killed eight-year-old Ayesha Ali after getting caught up in a twisted romance revolving around fictional Facebook characters
Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC said that even though there was evidence about their mental state, in particular Kouider, who was held at a medium secure mental hospital, none of it was a defence for murder.
Other high-profile and extreme examples of folie a deux include serial killers Fred and Rosemary West.
The case of New Zealand teenagers Pauline Parker and Juliet Hulme was made into the film Heavenly Creatures, starring Kate Winslett.
Chowdhury and Muddar convinced themselves little Ayesha was ‘evil’
Perhaps the most strikingly similar case to be heard at the Old Bailey involved lesbian child killers Polly Chowdhury and Kiki Muddar in 2015.
The pair were convicted of the manslaughter of Chowdhury’s eight-year-old daughter, Ayesha Ali, who died at their home in Chadwell Heath, east London, in August 2013.
Muddar, who like Kouider has a borderline personality disorder, convinced Chowdury her daughter was evil and together they punished and terrorised her with scary masks before she died in the bath.
Unlike Kouider and Medouni, Chowdhury accepted in the trial that she had been swept up Muddar’s fantasy world of alter-egos.
‘No amount of shaving will cleanse your soul’: Nanny’s mother slams killer who washed after murder
The devastated parents of murdered nanny Sophie Lionnet slammed her killers in statement read out after the verdicts.
Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne said: ‘These monsters repeatedly beat Sophie.
‘They starved her, tortured her and broke her until she could no longer fight.
‘We have now been tortured ourselves, forced to listen to Sophie’s last moments, her sobs and her crying.
‘Sabrina, no amount of shaving will ever cleanse your soul.’
It was a reference to Kouider having taken a shower and shaved herself after the murder, saying she needed to ‘clean her sin’.
Mr Lionnet separated from Sophie’s mother Catherine Devallonne when his daughter was four years old but the couple have come together to support each other through the ordeal of the trial
Ms Devallonne added: ‘No one, no God will ever forgive you both for what you have done to our daughter.
‘You will not be forgiven for the lies.
‘My heart is broken, shattered into a million pieces. Sophie’s loss will not be meaningless, lessons will be learned.’
The family’s interpreter Ian Macdonald read the statement in French before it was read out in English.
Father Patrick Lionnet described the ‘brutal shock’ of finding out about his daughter’s death.
‘The laughs, the hugs, the family celebrations, these special moments, they have all been tragically and brutally cut short by the people that had responsibility for Sophie’s care and wellbeing whilst she was employed by them,’ he said.
Detective Inspector Domenica Catino makes a statement outside the Old Bailey, London, on behalf of the victim’s family
He described his daughter as ‘kind, quiet and reserved’ and said he had encouraged her to go to London and fulfil her ‘life goal’.
He said: ‘If only I had known what would happen to her at the hands of Sabrina and Ouissem, that she would undergo so much physical and mental torture, that her so young life was so selfishly and unnecessarily taken from her, I would never have encouraged her to leave. I would still have my little girl.
‘Sophie was so nurturing, she liked children and animals. She couldn’t stand seeing others suffering and it breaks my heart to know that she was abused to the end of her life.
‘It was Sophie who suffered in silence, beaten and receiving wounds incompatible with life. She was imprisoned. You don’t have to be physically chained up to feel you are a prisoner. Isolation and fear are just as effective.
‘Sabrina and Ouissem have not only stolen the life of my only daughter, so brutally and without remorse, they have also stolen mine. My sleep, my happiness, my peace of mind and my future.’
Chip shop owner who helped victim saw killer’s sickening tirade
A takeaway owner has described getting ‘goosebumps all over’ when he witnessed Sabrina Kouider launch into a foul-mouthed tirade at her nanny.
Michael Croner befriended Sophie Lionnet and regularly give her food and a fizzy drink when she visited his fish and chip shop.
Kouider and Ouissem Medouni wanted to rent space from him for a French pancake stall, but he was put off after finding out what the fashion designer was like.
In an interview with ITV News, he said Miss Lionnet cried when she told him that she had been beaten.
Mr Croner said: ‘I started to talk to her as that was the time she wasn’t with anyone, by herself.
‘A couple of times she looked very sad, there were tears in her eyes, so then I started to talk to her – but it was still very hard to get anything out from her.
‘One incident, she really started to cry here, she had tears falling down. Then I asked her ‘What’s going on?’ That was the time she said somebody had beat her, so then I knew something was there.’
Desperate Sophie Lionnet confided in a local chip shop owner about her ordeal
Mr Croner said it was a ‘big shock’ to hear she had been hit, and he knew she wanted to leave but he felt he could not interfere.
Kouider shouted at Miss Lionnet in French over the suggestion that Mr Croner wanted to help her get another job.
He told the broadcaster: ‘She yelled at her and yelled at her, then she stopped, looked at me and said ‘She’s a f****** b****, she wants sympathy from everyone. She’s got a man here, a man there’. That is where I really saw the real Sabrina.’
Mr Croner was asked if he had ever thought in his wildest dreams what the couple were capable of.
He replied: ‘No. Being with them doing things, I couldn’t believe it until the last meeting when she came and had a go at me. That was when I knew who this Sabrina was.
‘It was shocking. I was working behind the counter and I had goosebumps all over.’
The couple barbecued chicken in a bid to cover the smell as they burned Sophie’s body
The couple tried to dispose of Sophie’s body by burning it on a bonfire. A picture taken during the murder investigation shows the charred remains of the au pair’s glasses
The victim’s mother Catherine Devallonne wept as she entered the Old Bailey today following a long and often disturbing murder trial
Sophie Lionnet was a shy au pair who became trapped in her killers’ violent, paranoid world
Sophie’s suitcase, emblazoned with French and British flags, was found stuffed in a shed
A picture of the patio where the couple tried to dispose of their nanny’s body
Kouider said Medouni was dunking Sophie in their bath around the time she died
Sophie’s parents Catherine Devallonne and Patrick Lionnet leave court after the verdicts
Around the time of the murder, Kouider was telling friends on WhatApp that Sophie had returned to France
The shy 21-year-old did not have the money to return home to France, the trial has heard