A woman was murdered and her body chopped into seven pieces after a chance meeting with a stranger, a court has heard.

Lorraine Cox, 32, had the ‘misfortune’ of bumping into Azum Mangori, 24, as she walked home after a night out with friends in Exeter, prosecutors say.

Mangori, also known as Christopher Mayer, took sexual advantage of her drunken state in an alleyway before taking her back to his room above a kebab shop and killing her, Exeter Crown Court was told.

Lorraine was reported missing by friends the next day, sparking an intense police search to find her.

A court heard Mangori tried to cover his tracks by dismembering her body and allegedly spent days using her phone to convince family and friends she was still alive.

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Mangori was interviewed by police eight days after Lorraine disappeared and was later charged with her murder.

Police recovered body parts from woodland on the outskirts of Exeter and forensic evidence from bins.

Prosecutor Simon Laws QC said: ‘One night in the summer of last year, Lorraine Cox went missing in Exeter.

‘She had been out with friends in the evening, it was the Bank Holiday Monday at the end of August.

‘At about 1.30am she had set off to walk home alone, she had had a lot to drink.

‘Her whereabouts were a mystery to her friends and family for the next week.

‘No one knew where she was, the answer was that she had been killed by this defendant.

‘She had the great misfortune to be spotted by him when she was walking home. He was out walking the streets alone.

‘He went up to her, they had never met one another before. He took advantage of her drunken state to have a sexual encounter with her in an alleyway.

‘He then led her back to his room above a kebab shop in the city centre and he killed her there.’

Mr Laws told the jury that after dismembering Lorraine’s body, Mangori used her sim card to make it appear that she was still alive.

He added: ‘He cut her body up into seven pieces and disposed of them.

‘He mutilated the body in other ways. He disposed of her clothing and all of the possessions she had had with her and then he took the sim card from her phone and used it to pretend to be her, to pretend to the world that she was still alive.

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‘In summary, he went to enormous efforts to get away with his crime, but those efforts were all in vain.

‘He had no idea of the scale and intensity of the police investigation that was to follow.

‘Each step that he had taken to hide the truth would be discovered, the evidence from that police inquiry will be put before you in this trial.’

Mangori has pleaded not guilty. The trial is expected to last for four weeks.

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