Published: 20:07, 26 November 2021
| Updated: 21:01, 26 November 2021
A man from Dover has been found guilty of murdering a 51-year-old man in his own home.
Seyed Iman Tabarhosseini, 38, unemployed and of Folkestone Road, was found guilty by a unanimous verdict of the jury at Lewes Crown Court after an 11-day trial. He was sentenced to a minimum of 30 years in jail.
It was in April this year that police responding to calls of concern about the welfare of Darren Alderton, 51, found him dead in his flat in Magdalen Road, St Leonards.
A post-mortem found that the victim had died of blunt force trauma to the head, with lacerations consistent with multiple blows by a heavy object. It was confirmed the fatal injuries were caused by a blood-stained stone found in the Mr Alderton's loft.
There was no sign of forced entry, so police guessed the assailant had been known to Mr Alderton.
An examination of his phone records found two calls to the same number made on the morning of his death, Tuesday, April 6.
But his flat was also fitted with CCTV which showed a man entering the property with Mr Alderton just minutes after the phone calls were made.
The man was caught again on CCTV four hours later and can be seen with blood on his clothing, wearing latex gloves and carrying the stone later found in the loft.
He searches through drawers and looks under the bed before leaving the room.
The suspect was seen again on CCTV half an hour later, wearing different clothing and he leaving the property carrying two bags.
Traced through his phone number, Tabarhosseini was matched as the man in the CCTV thanks to a distinctive tattoo on the left side of his neck.
Police were able later to use other CCTV footage to produce a time-line of Tabarhosseini's movements both the day before and after the murder. The day before he had left his Dover address and booked into a hotel in Hastings.
After the murder he was traced getting a taxi to Heathrow and trying unsuccessfully to get a flight out of the country. He was also caught several times disposing of items in waste bins at garages in Hastings and Rye and returning to and leaving the hotel again.
Tabarhosseini was later arrested in London.
He remained silent during police interviews, but officers traced the taxi driver who had driven him to Heathrow who said that Tabarhosseini had appeared incredibly agitated and was speaking about having assaulted his drug dealer. Tabarhosseini said he'd planned to take his dealer's drugs and money because he'd been treating him badly.
After the trial, DCI Emma Vickers said: "Seyed Iman Tabarhosseini killed Darren Alderton in a violent, sustained and pre-meditated attack. He travelled to Hastings with intent to confront Darren, with intent to steal drugs and money from him, and with intent to cause him harm.
"Tabarhosseini then went to great lengths to try and cover up his crime. He changed his clothing on multiple occasions and disposed of evidence in different bins in Hastings, Rye and at his home in Dover. He even tried to leave the country and when that was unsuccessful, he tried to evade arrest in London."
DVI Vickers said: "The evidence we presented to the court, including comprehensive CCTV footage, was compelling and it has resulted in a dangerous offender being rightfully convicted."