A sadistic killer who tied up and tortured a barmaid before mutilating her naked body with a broken bottle has been jailed for 29 years.
Kasim Lewis, 31, abducted Iuliana Tudos, 22, on Christmas Eve as she walked across Finsbury Park in north London and bound her with cable ties in an ordeal lasting at least an hour and a half.
The convicted sex attacker forced her to reveal her PIN number then left her desecrated corpse in a burnt out shed after cutting her wrists to the bone and slitting her throat.
Prosecutor Crispin Aylett said: ‘Iuliana’s naked body was found in a dilapidated shed in Finsbury Park.
‘At some point in the course of a sustained and brutal attack the defendant must have forced her to reveal her PIN number.
‘She was struck over the head, most likely with a bottle and after he used the bottle to cause deep lying injuries on her back, her neck and her wrists.
Mr Aylett said the injuries were ‘barbaric’ and added: ‘The only question was Iuliana conscious at the time of the injuries.
Lewis was seen on CCTV just after 10pm at Manor House tube station.
He attempted to withdraw £100 from her bank account but could only take out £30, and then bought a bottle of brandy.
In the days afterwards, Lewis texted a friend to ask if he had ‘seen the news’ about the barmaid.
Feigning ignorance her said ‘Christmas Eve? That’s what Saturday she was missing?’
Ms Tudos, also known as Julia or Lili, was discovered three days later on 27 December after her concerned friends retraced her steps.
A post-mortem examination gave the cause of death as a stab wound to the abdomen and a head injury.
Lewis was arrested at an address in Dalston on January 1 and charged with murder the next day.
Ms Tudos, of Russian and Greek origin, had been working a shift at the Worlds End pub in Camden that night before heading to the Dover Castle nearby.
She agreed to spend the next day at her friend’s house for Christmas and was planning on staying the night and headed home first to collect some things.
She was last seen just after 8pm on CCTV as she walked across Finsbury Park to her flat in Upper Tollington Park.
Ms Tudos had been due to meet with friends in Enfield but never arrived, prompting a police appeal for information.
Lewis was forced to leave his homeland of Montessarat in 1995 after the volcano disaster.
He is addicted to drugs, indeed he was high on cocaine and cannabis during the attack, and was diagnosed as HIV positive in 2003.
Lewis was jailed for two years for sexual assault and exposure on a bus and placed on the sex offenders register in September 2005.
He then received a further eight months in jail for failing to comply with the sex offender notification requirements and a community order in 2011.
Lewis, of Friern Barnet Road, New Southgate, north London, admitted murder
Kasim Lewis was jailed for life with a minimum of 29 years for the ‘horrendous and barbaric’ killing.
Judge Richard Marks, QC, said: ‘This was a murder for gain. What is however, in dispute is whether this case should be categorised as a murder involving sexual or sadistic conduct.
‘There must have been a sexual element, even if for some reason that was not something that was persisted in.
‘There is no doubt that this was a killing that involved the most appalling brutality as the photographs demonstrate.
‘It is a killing that has been rightly described as horrendous and barbaric.
‘At the time of the attack, this slightly built young woman was alone in a park anight and as such, vulnerable in the extreme as you unquestionably realised.
‘She must have died a terrible death and what you did to her was wicked beyond belief.’
Sarah Dale, from the CPS, said: ‘Iuliana was killed in a sustained and brutal attack on Christmas Eve and her body later found inside a shed in Finsbury Park.
‘Hours after Iuliana entered that park, Kasim Lewis used her bank card and PIN at a cash machine. He knew her PIN because he had got it from her before he murdered her.
‘His jeans stained with her blood were found in his flat, and her phone signal was identified nearby.
‘Our thoughts are with Iuliana’s family today and we hope today’s conviction and sentence bring them some measure of satisfaction
The court heard before he left the body Lewis carved either the Batman logo or the letter ‘M’ into the middle of her chest.
The killer was a bisexual who was in a relationship with a man but prowled Finsbury Park to satisfy his cravings for casual sex.
He had a fascination with sadism and had a pornographic film on his phone called ‘Step Sisters Caught.’
Among the trailers was one entitled, ‘Bad Teens Punished’ where a young woman is chased into an alleyway by a man who says: ‘She ain’t getting away again.’
The woman says: ‘Please don’t hurt me. I’ll do anything’ and white cable ties are seen around her wrists.
Another chilling image showed a woman with a slit throat.
Lewis began amassing his previous convictions in 2002 when he was 15 and was sent to a Young Offenders’ Institute for 18 months for car theft.
In 2005, he was sentenced to two years’ detention for offences of sexual assault and exposure and put on the sex offenders register for life.
Lewis had boarded a bus and prodded the woman’s bottom through a gap in her seat and she turned to see him performing a sex act.
He also has previous convictions for burglary, attempted theft and handling stolen goods.
The court head Iuliana was just 5’1” tall and of slight build.
She came to London in 2013 and had worked in Camden Market selling T-shirts featuring characters from Japanese anime cartoons.
Since early 2017 she had been working at the World’s End and was well-known and much-liked figure in the area.
Her friends described her as a ‘selfless…helpful’ person and ‘very open and honest…she would speak to anyone’.
At the time of the killing she was living in a bed-sit in a house on Upper Tollington Park, not far from Finsbury Park.
Mr Aylett said the pathologist found the bizarre carved symbol on her body.
‘He has described the incised injury to the centre of Iuliana’s chest as looking like either the logo for the screen character ‘Batman’ or else the letter ‘M’.
When he was arrested Lewis said to police, ‘What do you want me to say?’ the officer replied, ‘That is a matter for you,’ he said, ‘I did it.’
At his flat were a pair of blood stained jeans and knife stashed in a freezer.
Police found violent porn films on his phone including a woman with a deep wound to her throat and another where a woman is chased down an alley and tied up with white cable ties.
Her stepfather, Costas Vasiliov, said in a statement read to the court: ‘Iuliana was full of energy, she never caused any trouble at school or at home, she lived with us from the age of three when her mother and I were married.
‘She was loved and cherished by all of her friends and family.
‘Our dream was to get her back from Cyprus after her graduation, all of this now is gone.
‘The only thing that gives us strength is that Iuliana is now safe in God’s hands – she was murdered, all her dreams have been lost.’
Jeremy Dein, QC, defending, said Lewis wanted to express his ‘sincere remorse.’
He said Lewis carried out the murder out of ‘morbid curiosity with the human anatomy’ and it was not sexually motivated.