Tina Cantello murder: Debt collector had 30 stab wounds

image source, Essex Police
image captionTina Cantello worked as a debt collector making door-to-door visits

A man accused of murdering a debt collector bought drugs and went online to search for porn soon after the killing, a court has heard.

Geoffrey Hutton, 38, allegedly stabbed Tina Cantello to death at his home in Langdon Hills, Essex, in June.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard how Ms Cantello, 49, was stabbed 30 times. Her partially-clothed body was discovered in a bedroom.

Mr Hutton, who is deaf, denies murdering the mother-of-three.

Ms Cantello was reported missing on 8 June after she left for work at around 17:00 BST and did not return home.

Prosecutor Simon Spence told the court Ms Cantello met Mr Hutton at his house, in Derby Close, many times and the pair shared a "perfectly amicable relationship".

But on that particular day, Mr Spence said Mr Hutton had been "looking to obtain drugs and left his house 20 minutes after Ms Cantello arrived".

image captionMs Cantello's body was found at a property in Derby Close in Basildon

Blood and urine samples later showed he had taken "a significant amount of cocaine" and before he purchased the drugs, a witness described Mr Hutton as being "drenched, like he had stood in the shower with his clothes on", the court heard.

Computer records also showed that at about 18:30 BST, Mr Hutton accessed porn online.

Police were able to track Ms Cantello's car to Mr Hutton's address, where they found him "covered in blood" and her "largely naked" body upstairs. Her underwear was "wrapped around her right ankle", jurors heard.

A post-mortem examination showed Ms Cantello, of Holst Avenue, Laindon, had 30 stab wounds to her chest and neck, as well as 17 abrasions.

As part of her role, for Provident Financial, she would often visit customers' homes to collect cash.

Mr Hutton originally told police that an unknown man had killed Ms Cantello but Mr Spence said there was "very little, if any, forensic evidence" to prove a third person had been in the house.

The trial continues.

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