Developer guilty of murdering caretaker

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A property developer has been convicted of murdering a man during a £2m deal in an act "motivated by greed".

Thanos Papalexis, 37, was found guilty at the Old Bailey on Friday of murdering a caretaker, Charalambos Christodoulides, 55, at a warehouse in Kilburn, north-west London, in March 2000. He believed that his victim stood in the way of a quick deal to sell the derelict site, which he was convinced would save him from financial ruin.

Mr Christodoulides's body was found in a garage inspection pit in the warehouse. He had been tied to a chair, tortured and strangled.

The conviction could not be reported until yesterday, when the jury was discharged after failing to reach verdicts on Ylli Xhelo, 35, and Robert Baxhija, 29, Albanians employed by Papalexis, who were also charged with the murder.

Papalexis was in a "perilous" financial state after losses on another development in Holloway, north London.

He is in custody awaiting sentence on 30 September.