A British playboy who held a fundraising event for Hillary Clinton is facing life imprisonment for the murder of a caretaker who stood in the way of a $3.2 million property deal.
Thanos Papalexis, 37, tortured and killed Charalambos Christodoulides after he refused to move out of a flat in a North London warehouse that the struggling developer was trying to sell. Christodoulides, 55, a shy loner known as Bambi, was hooded, tied to a chair, beaten and strangled. His body was wrapped in a sheet, covered with paint-stripper and hidden.
The case against Papalexis was strengthened after a former Miami porn star and $2,800-a-night prostitute stated that he had confessed to the killing. Rebecca DeFalco told U.S. marshals that her former lover told her he had killed a man who was a “problem” and gave her a graphic description of the murder.
The victim, a sitting tenant who had lived in the flat for most of his adult life, refused to move out after Papalexis received a $3.7 million offer for the derelict warehouse in Kilburn.
The developer was desperate to sell to raise funds to save his ailing business. It was claimed that he ordered hired hands to beat and kill Christodoulides in March 2000.
Papalexis, the son of a Greek shipping magnate, was found guilty on Friday of murder after a three-month trial at the Old Bailey. The conviction can only now be reported after the jury failed Monday to reach verdicts on murder charges against Robert Baxhija, 29, and Ylli Xhelo, 36, his alleged henchmen, both Albanian illegal immigrants.
Christodoulides’s family quickly reported him missing, but although police found blood stains and his glasses in the warehouse, it was not until two weeks later that his body was found in a garage inspection pit in the warehouse complex.
Despite the killing, the warehouse sale fell through and Papalexis was saddled with debts of $13 million. As the receivers moved in, he fled to the US and reinvented himself as a debonair playboy.