Mum, 35, fed ketchup sachets as she was tortured and beaten to death by 'sadistic' trio of killers, court hears

11 September 2023, 20:08 | Updated: 11 September 2023, 21:19

A mother was fed only ketchup sachets after being enslaved, burned and beaten to death by three "sadistic" killers, a court has heard.
A mother was fed only ketchup sachets after being enslaved, burned and beaten to death by three "sadistic" killers, a court has heard. Picture: LBC / Alamy / Met

By Danielle DeWolfe

A mother was fed only ketchup sachets after being enslaved, burned and beaten to death by three "sadistic" killers, a court has heard.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Shakira Spencer, 35, was found dead by police in a cupboard at her home in Hanwell, west London, on September 25 last year.

Police were first called to the flat after her neighbour spotted maggots crawling out from beneath her front door.

Appearing at the Old Bailey in London, Ashana Studholme, 38, Ms Spencer's lover, Shaun Pendlebury, 26, and Lisa Richardson, 44, had all previously denied murder and preventing a lawful burial.

Described as a "beautiful happy, healthy woman" according to prosecutor Allison Hunter KC, Ms Spencer, who was once a "voluptuous size 16", was reduced to "skin and bone" following the length reign of abuse.

Described as a "beautiful happy, healthy woman" according to prosecutor Allison Hunter KC, Ms Spencer, who was once a "voluptuous size 16", was reduced to "skin and bone" following the length reign of abuse.
Described as a "beautiful happy, healthy woman" according to prosecutor Allison Hunter KC, Ms Spencer, who was once a "voluptuous size 16", was reduced to "skin and bone" following the length reign of abuse. Picture: LBC / Met

Speaking at the Old Bailey, Ms Hunter went on to describe at length how the three alleged killers had controlled and extensively tortured Ms Spencer.

"For whatever was their cruel, sadistic motive, these three defendants tormented, tortured, starved, burned, and eventually battered Shakira to death," said Ms Hunter.

"Over the months leading up to her murder the defendants, primarily Studholme and Richardson, subdued and dominated Shakira so totally that she was under all of their complete control.

"She was isolated from everyone she had previously known, her freewill seemingly sapped and stolen from her.

Read more: Five children who travelled from UK to Pakistan with Sara Sharif's father found in police raid

Read more: Girl, 5, has her cheek eaten by Bully dog in brutal attack - as dog owners reveal how pets are being ripped apart

"They stole her self-respect, her finances, took over her flat, prostituted her (at least so they claimed), treated her like a slave ordering her wake up in the early hours of the morning to clean their houses, sending her to the shops to do their errands, feeding her only on sachets of ketchup.

Ms Hunter continued: "Then in circumstances of unbelievable depravity, [they] boasted about and on occasion photographed and filmed what they did and were intending to do to her.

Shakira Spencer, 35, was found dead by police in a cupboard at her home in Hanwell, west London, on September 25 last year.
Shakira Spencer, 35, was found dead by police in a cupboard at her home in Hanwell, west London, on September 25 last year. Picture: LBC / Google

"The last beatings to the brink of her death took place in the home of Ashana Studholme, likely between 11 and 12 September."

The court heard how following her death, the victim's body was loaded into the boot of a red Honda Civic - borrowed by defendant Pendlebury - on the evening of September 12.

After placing her body in a hallway cupboard, the group mounted a "clean-up operation", later being caught on CCTV as they returned to Studholme's home in Greenhill Road, Harrow.

'It had first been their plan to dispose of her body in a caravan Pendlebury had borrowed from his same aunt on 15 September 2022,' said Ms Hunter.

'Pendlebury never returned the caravan to his aunt, but once the three defendants had set about removing what they thought were all traces of Shakira's blood, bodily fluids and DNA from their own respective premises, and attempting to clear traces of their presence in Shakira's flat after she lay dead."

Pendlebury, Richardson, and Studholme, all deny murder and preventing a lawful burial.

The trial continues.

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Rishi Sunak has announced an extra £25 million in funding to stop the boats.

Sunak announces £25m extra funding to tackle people smuggling gangs ahead of migration talks with Austrian Chancellor

A woman in her 50s was mauled to death in her own home in east London.

Woman mauled to death in XL Bully attack at east London home as police seize two dogs

Turkey Erdogan Eurovision

Turkey’s leader claims Eurovision Song Contest is a threat to family values

Labour's Diana Johnson has told LBC the department of health was 'defending itself' during the infected blood scandal.

‘The department of health was institutionally defending itself’, Labour MP tells LBC after infected blood scandal report

Iran Ebrahim Raisi

Iran’s president and foreign minister die in helicopter crash

Exclusive
Julian Assange's wife calls for extradition case against WikiLeaks founder to be abandoned by US after High Court win

Julian Assange's wife calls for extradition case against WikiLeaks founder to be abandoned by US after High Court win

France Cannes 2024 The Apprentice Red Carpet

The Apprentice, about a young Donald Trump, premieres in Cannes

A 'heat dome' is forecast to hit over the half-term.

UK to enjoy 800-mile ‘heat dome’ with temperatures of up to 25C in parts of country over half term

King Charles and Queen Camilla in attendance of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show

King Charles and Queen Camilla greet crowds at Chelsea Flower Show as they visit garden designed by children

Haiti Airport

Haiti’s main airport reopens nearly three months after violence forced it closed

Israel Palestinians

International Criminal Court seeks arrest warrants for Israeli and Hamas leaders

Hardline 'Butcher of Tehran' Ebrahim Raisi's death opens door for escalating Iran-West confrontation

Hardline 'Butcher of Tehran' Ebrahim Raisi's death opens door for escalating Iran-West confrontation

Why everyone in their twenties seems to be running - and why I’m one of them

Why everyone in their twenties seems to be running - and why I’m one of them

Rishi Sunak has apologised for the infected blood scandal.

'This is a day of shame': Rishi Sunak apologises ‘wholeheartedly’ for infected blood scandal after 'chilling' report

Kate Roughley, 37, strapped the Genevieve Meehan face down on to a bean bag

Parents will 'never forgive' nursery worker who killed daughter by strapping her face down and ignoring cries

Children were used as "objects for research" the final report of the Infected Blood Inquiry has found.

The school where dozens died: Only 30 of 122 boys at Treloar College are alive after experiments with infected blood