British Banker left chilling out-of-office message before chopping up prostitutes

Above: One of the murdered women, Jesse Lorena Ruri.

A British investment banker charged with the murder of two prostitutes in Hong Kong branded himself an ‘insane psychopath’ in a chilling e-mail days before the bodies were found at his flat.

Cambridge graduate Rurik Jutting, 29, quit his job as a Merrill Lynch trader just days before the grisly discovery of one ‘nearly decapitated’ woman in a suitcase and another who had her throat slashed.

He appeared in court this morning for a short hearing in which the two charges of murder were read out to him and was remanded in custody until November 10.

Last night, it emerged that sending Jutting an email at his Bank of America Merrill Lynch account triggered an automated ‘out-of-office’ reply with a sinister message.

The e-mail response read: ‘I am out of the office. Indefinitely. For urgent enquiries, or indeed any enquiries, please contact someone who is not an insane psychopath.

‘For escalation please contact God, though suspect the devil will have custody [Last line only really worked if I had followed through].’

The message would appear to suggest he had meant to kill himself.

In another disturbing development, police in the former British colony were urgently investigating whether there were any more victims after photos of one of the dead women were allegedly among 2,000 pictures and videos on a smartphone used by Jutting.

The American Psycho-style killing spree came to an end on Halloween night when Jutting, from Surrey, reportedly rang police shortly after 3am.

Officers arrived at his blood-spattered 31st-floor apartment to find a 30-year-old Filipina prostitute, named locally as Jesse Lorena Ruri, still alive despite gaping knife wounds to her throat and buttocks. She died soon after.

Eight hours later, during a forensic examination of the flat, police officers spotted a suitcase on the balcony which had two feet protruding.

Inside was the decomposing naked body of the second prostitute, 25-year-old Indonesian Sumarti Ningsih.

Her arms and legs had been bound with rope and her head was almost cut off, according to police at the scene. Her body is thought to have been there for as many as five days.
Sex toys and cocaine were also reportedly found, along with a 12-inch knife that was seized by officers.

A Hong Kong newspaper, Ming Pao, said that Jutting had been talking ‘delirious nonsense’ to the police when they arrived.

Jutting, who moved to Hong Kong from London in July last year, quit his high-earning job in the city, where expat bankers lead notoriously hedonistic lifestyles.

He appears to have posted to Facebook last Monday that he was embarking on a ‘new journey’.

He wrote: ‘Stepping down from the ledge. Burden lifted; new journey begins. Scared and anxious but also excited.

‘The first step is always the hardest.’

A police source said they were told Jutting had left the US bank ‘within the last few days’ but was unsure if his resignation came before the killing of the first of the two women.

Merrill Lynch spokesman Paul Scanlon would not say precisely when Jutting had left the bank, telling the Mail: ‘We are not getting into when the guy left.

‘When someone leaves the company we don’t talk about it. We are just saying he left recently.’

Police in Hong Kong spent yesterday examining the contents of Jutting’s smartphone as they attempted to establish whether there are any further victims.

Detectives also spread out among the bars near Jutting’s apartment block in the popular Wan Chai area and called at massage parlours.

Jutting is believed to have brought a sex worker apparently known as Jessie home after a Halloween party on Friday night in the red light district, where some revellers were dressed as blood-dripping zombies.

CCTV footage from the upmarket 40-storey J Residence showed him returning with a ‘sexily dressed’ woman, according to local press.

After police were called to his apartment, Jutting was questioned before being driven away for further questioning, leaving a forensic team to examine the scene.

It was not until eight hours had passed that police wearing face masks went out on to the balcony and opened the black suitcase measuring three feet by 18 inches.

The body’s state of decomposition led police to believe that the suitcase had been left out in Hong Kong’s sweltering humidity for up to five days.

One man living in the block, where most of the residents are expatriates, said he had noticed an unusual smell in recent days.

A police source quoted by the South China Morning Post said: ‘She was nearly decapitated and her hands and legs had been bound with ropes.

‘She was naked and wrapped in a towel before being stuffed into the suitcase. Her passport was found at the scene.’

Assistant police commander Wan Siu-hung said officers had not discovered the second body sooner because they were collecting evidence in the living room first.

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