Lapland killer says he can't remember attacking Scots girlfriend

The boyfriend of a Scottish woman who was stabbed to death in Lapland has admitted killing her but insists he has no memory of the attack.

Rebecca Johnson from Fife who has reportedly been stabbed to death by her boyfriend in Lapland . Pic supplied by Dundee Courier

Rebecca Johnson’s family were present when the Finnish court heard the 26-year-old died after suffering multiple stab wounds and several other injuries on 3 December last year.

Karel Frybl, a 36-year-old Czech national also known as Radek Kovac, has denied murder, claiming he had a temporary mental breakdown.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Ms Johnson was working as a seasonal guide with Santa Safaris, a firm offering Christmas-themed tours.

A manhunt was launched after her body was discovered at her flat in the northern Finnish village of Kuttanen last December.

Police used snow scooters, dogs and a helicopter to track Frybl down after he fled into the frozen wilderness.

Court documents revealed she died as a result of ten stab wounds to the chest and there were 30 other puncture wounds and cuts on her body.

The trial, in Rovaniemi, was told there had been a history of verbal and physical abuse in the relationship.

The court heard the couple had argued the night before Ms Johnson died and had slept in separate cottages.

Messages between Ms Johnson and her sister were read out, in which her sister urged her to report Frybl to his employers and warned her she could be in danger.

In a WhatsApp message she said: “This will escalate and he may end up killing you.”

Lapland police released a photo of the spot where Frybl was caught.

When arrested he was found to have two stab wounds to his stomach, which prosecutors claim were self-inflicted.

Frybl’s lawyer suggested he was instead stabbed by Ms Johnson, claiming she attacked his client when he returned to her cottage the morning after their argument.

The lawyer said Frybl had served with the Czech army in Kosovo and Afghanistan, which may have left him with mental health problems that contributed to his temporary breakdown.

The couple had lived in Scotland before moving to the Arctic to take up seasonal work.

Ms Johnson was employed by Santa Safaris, which works with Oxford-based tour operator Transun Travel to organise Christmas-themed excursions in Lapland.

Ms Johnson was from Burntisland in Fife, and several members of her family were in court, wearing purple ribbons in her memory. The family is also seeking compensation for her death. The trial continues.