Montes is a sexual sadist and always ready to kill, court is told

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The Spanish waiter accused of murdering the Cornish schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson is a sadistic sexual deviant who was always likely to kill, his psychiatrist said yesterday.

The Spanish waiter accused of murdering the Cornish schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson is a sadistic sexual deviant who was always likely to kill, his psychiatrist said yesterday.

Jean-Michel Masson, the doctor who treated Francisco Arce Montes after his arrest in 2001, said the Spaniard was not suffering from mental illness and understood the immorality of his actions.

The evidence, on the fifth day of Montes's trial in Rennes, north- west France, followed a claim that the defendant kept a photograph of 13-year-old Caroline and bragged to friends about having sex with her.

Dr Masson, who interviewed Montes throughout 2002, said the 54-year-old had made it clear he took pleasure from the suffering of his victims. The psychiatrist said: "He is perfectly clear. He is in touch with reality. He can see what is morally allowed and what is not. He can see rape is not morally allowed. Even dirtying the other person is part of his pleasure."

Describing Montes as an egocentric individual who was obsessed with cleanliness, Dr Masson said the Spaniard had a single purpose when he entered the youth hostel in the Breton village of Pleine Fougères, where Caroline was sleeping.

The psychiatrist said: "He [Montes] said he wasn't taking any risks because he was going into a youth hostel in the night and in that way he would quench his sexual desires."

Dr Masson added that the nature of the defendant's sexual desires meant his offences would have increased in severity until he killed or was caught. He said: "In cases of sexual perversion of this kind, crimes get inevitably worse. And they end up with murder, as was the case with Montes."

Earlier, the court was told by a former friend of Montes that the waiter kept a collection of photographs of young girls with whom he claimed to have had sex. Eduardo Suarez, 44, a car salesman from the defendant's home town of Gijon in northern Spain, said he was shown a picture of Caroline in which she was wearing a white blouse and a dark skirt.

Mr Suarez said: "He showed me the photograph of an English girl and he said she was called Caroline Dickinson. He said she was a pretty girl, a little china doll and that we would never be able to pick her up."

The jury has already been told that Montes admits sexually assaulting Caroline but denies her murder, claiming she was still breathing when he left her room early on 18 July 1996.

Mr Suarez added: "I asked him how he knew this girl and he said he had met her in a youth hostel in Brittany in France and she was playing in a garden with other girls. He said he made love to her and this photo was in the girl's bag. I said, 'What happened next?' He said, 'Nothing; [that] she left'."

Caroline's mother, Sue Dickinson, 45, who is divorced from her father, John, later cast doubt on whether the picture showed her daughter. She told the court that Caroline had had no pictures of herself with her.

Mrs Dickinson, who has attended every day of the trial with Mr Dickinson, 47, and their 19-year-old daughter, Jenny, said: "We packed her bag together. She had no photos, except for her passport. To my knowledge, she has never had a photo taken in a white shirt and dark skirt. There is no school picture of that nature."

Mr Suarez, who insisted he recognised Caroline in the picture and claimed her name was written on it, said Montes was known in Gijon for being attracted to young girls and having a violent temper.

Speaking in Spanish through a translator, Mr Saurez said Montes had an ability to become unstable, which he saw when their car was broken into and clothes stolen during a trip to Barcelona. The salesman said: "He became very aggressive. His hands started trembling. His eyes looked as if they were going to pop out. It was the worst moment of my life.

"He said, 'You are very lucky because I controlled myself. Otherwise you would not have been lucky.' He said, 'I'm not like your other friends. I don't care about going to prison. I can kill someone without any problem.'

"I wanted to jump out of the car. He said, 'If you leave me by the side of the road I will kill you in Gijon.' That was the end of our friendship."

Mr Suarez added: "I think he is somebody who is very ill."

The case continues.