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German court convicts woman for killing boyfriend with circular saw during sex

The victim was trussed up in bed and blindfolded when the woman picked up a bedside circular saw and killed him. The body lay in her bed for months until a new boyfriend helped her bury it.

Deutschland Prozess um Mord mit Kreissäge in Haar im Landkreis München (picture alliance/dpa/M. Balk)

A Munich court on Friday sentenced a woman to more than 12 years in prison for killing her boyfriend with a circular saw while they were having sex.

Prosecutors said the woman attacked her boyfriend in 2008 while he was tied to a bed and blindfolded with blacked-out swimming goggles. The literary student died from wounds to the upper body and his neck caused by the hand-held powertool.

"The killing is bizarre and bewildering and fulfills all the criteria of a nightmare scenario," Judge Michael Höhne said. "If someone pushes a running circular saw into someone's neck two times, they are acting with an intent to destroy."

The state court found the 32-year-old student guilty of manslaughter. Prosecutors had asked for a life sentence for murder. The court did not find murderous traits in the case, partly due to a lack of motive.

Prosecutors said they were examining the judgment. 

"Whether it was premeditated murder or spur-of-the-moment manslaughter is an extremely important question because of the influence this has on the sentencing," German criminologist Rudolf Egg told DW in February. 

The defendant was identified only as Gabriele P. in line with German privacy rules.

New boyfriend discovers corpse

Police search the Munich garden of the killer (picture alliance/dpa/M. Balk)

Police found the body in 2016 buried in her garden after receiving a tip-off

Gabriele had kicked out boyfriend Alexander H. not long before the murder. When he returned she pretended to make up with him. They proceeded to the attic bedroom where, as per usual, Alex blindfolded himself. During sex, he asked his girlfriend to tie him to the bed. It was then that Gabriele grabbed the saw and cut into his chest and neck. 

After she killed him, she left his body lying in her bed under a blanket for several months and did not use the room. Her flatmates did not realize that the smell emanating from the room was his body decaying.

Months later her new boyfriend, Christian, discovered the corpse while catsitting for Gabriele, who was on vacation. On her return he helped her bury the remains in the garden, assisted by another friend. Christian and Gabriele later married in a Buddhist-style ceremony.

Police found the remains in 2006 after a tip from someone who heard about the murder at a party.

Christian and the helper were both jailed in September 2016 for two years and eight months and for one year and nine months, respectively. They have appealed their cases.

Desperate act

Gabriele claimed during the court case that Alexander was sexually abusive, but that she did not plan the killing and deeply regretted it.

"How am I supposed to explain something that I do not understand myself?" she said.

Her lawyer described the killing as a "desperate act."

The victim's parents did not realize he was dead and thought he had absconded to Romania.

Watch video 00:47

Man captures his own murder on facebook

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