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Golf club killing: God’s voice told me to kill my boss
9:30am Tuesday 20th March 2012 in News
A WAITER killed his boss “because God told him to do it”.
Serbian-born Jonathan Limani had only been in Britain for two weeks when he beheaded a restaurant manager at The Oxfordshire Golf Club in Thame.
Christopher Varian, 32, was killed with a cheese knife in an act described by a judge at Oxford Crown Court yesterday as “the ultimate in violence”.
Psychiatrist Dr Michael Alcock said: “His motivation was one of psychosis.
“He believed, in summary, that there was a conspiracy for the devil to inflict harm and, wrongly, he believed that Mr Varian was involved in this conspiracy.
“He was hearing voices from God (calling on him) to prevent this conspiracy from happening and, when required, to take his life in the way he did.”
The incident took place on August 21, 2010, but court proceedings stalled over Limani’s mental health and his changing pleas.
The 34-year-old, who has paranoid schizophrenia and was described by Dr Alcock as “highly dangerous”, yesterday admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.
At about 3pm on the Saturday in question, Mr Varian, who was raised in Chinnor, near Thame, was having a cigarette break after overseeing a wedding in The Oxfordshire’s Oak Suite.
Limani, who had taken a cheese knife from a cutlery store two floors above the smoking area, beheaded his boss in the manner of a “persistent and determined individual, (taking) a certain degree of time and energy, even with a very sharp knife”, a pathologist said.
Prosecutor Alan Blake said as witnesses pleaded with him to stop, Limani continued “as though transfixed, sawing”.
A 999 call from porter Guy Hathaway-Pearce, who stayed with Limani until police arrived, picked up the defendant saying “I wanted to kill him because he pick a fight”.
Limani, who was living at the golf club, had dual nationality having lived in Sweden since 2002.
In 1999 he was convicted of supplying heroin in Switzerland and given a 12-month suspended sentence, which was later implemented in 2004 after he left and then returned to the country.
His mental-health problems had been known since 2005, having been the subject of numerous hospital orders in Sweden.
Police said he lied about his previous conviction and was cleared to work in Britain through a Swedish employment agency.
Mr Varian’s parents, Nigel and Sue, run a guesthouse in France and had just disembarked from a ferry in England en route to their other son’s wedding when the news was broken to them.
The incident had produced images in Mr Varian’s mind that won’t go away, Mr Blake said.
Judge Anthony King jailed Limani for life, with a minimum term of 19 years, but ordered he remain in Broadmoor Hospital indefinitely until his mental health improved.
He will only be released from prison, on licence for the rest of his life, when the parole board see fit.
Judge King said: “There was no provocation of any kind that triggered what you did. It was an act of extreme and vicious brutality.”