Killer jailed for ‘depraved’ murder and rape of escort

Chinda was caught on camera leaving victims flat on Union Terrace  just after her last call. Picture: Google
Chinda was caught on camera leaving victims flat on Union Terrace just after her last call. Picture: Google
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A government official’s son has been jailed for life after raping and murdering a woman in an Aberdeen flat.

Bala Chinda, 26, killed 37-year-old Jessica McGraa only a few weeks after arriving in Scotland to study at Robert Gordon’s University.

Her body was found partially clothed in the bedroom of a flat she had rented in the city’s Union Terrace on 12 February last year. CCTV footage revealed that she had travelled to Chinda’s student accommodation on King Street with him in a taxi before they returned to her apartment a short time later.

She made her last call on her mobile phone a few minutes before surveillance cameras recorded Chinda walking down the street away from her flat.

Yesterday a jury of eight women and seven men unanimously found Chinda guilty of murdering Ms McGraa in the city centre flat.

They took more than six hours to reach their verdict and also found him guilty of raping the mother-of-one and stealing her two mobile phones in an attempt to defeat the ends of justice.

Jailing Chinda, judge Lord Beckett told him he had ended the life of a woman described by friends giving evidence as “full of fun” and who had much left to live for.

The Nigerian, whose father works as the immigration attaché at the Nigerian embassy in Beijing, wept uncontrollably after he was found guilty.

The court heard that Ms McGraa died of asphyxiation and was probably smothered with a pillow and possibly strangled with her scarf.

During the trial the court heard that Ms McGraa had a seven-year-old son who lived with her adopted mother in London.

Ms McGraa was originally from Nigeria and was an orphan but sent money back to her two sisters and brothers who lived abroad.

Her work as an escort was only exposed to her closest friends after her death, with many believing she travelled round the country selling hair extensions.

She visited her son in London every month and took him on luxury holidays abroad and was dating a young man in Dublin whom she planned to marry.

Chinda was told he must serve a minimum of 18 years in jail.