Former Merrill Lynch trader suspected of serial murder in Hong Kong

The automated reply messages which are sent from the email of executives who are away from their offices for a period of time are, by and large, relatively anodyne and forgettable.

Indeed, the vast majority follow the very same line, stating that the employee is not available and will contact the sender of the email upon return, or if it was as a result of leaving the company, a note of whom to contact instead. One particular automated message left by former Merrill Lynch trader Rurik Jutting, however, had a far more chilling tone.

“I am out of the office. Indefinitely. For urgent enquiries, or indeed any enquiries, please contact someone who is not an insane psychopath” was Mr. Jutting’s most alarming email response message.

The chain of events which ensued have landed Mr. Jutting as a man accused of the murder of two women who were found with severe fatal injuries, and have been identified as prostitutes.

Mr. Jutting, who is British, resides in Hong Kong and had been employed by Merrill Lynch in the Asian financial center. He was a successful trader with the firm, and at the age of 29 had, according to a report by the Daily Mail today, become obsessed with money and power.

Although this message appeared as an automated response to senders of mail to Mr. Jutting’s business email address on October 31, he had quit his position at the firm several days previously, and had been suspected of being devastated after his fiancee, who is a fellow trader, allegedly cheated on him with another man.

Subsequently, Mr. Jutting telephoned Hong Kong Police at 3am on the morning of November 1. On arrival at Mr. Jutting’s apartment, the Police found a prostitute named Jesse Lorena Ruri with her throat slashed, and a second woman who was in a suitcase with severe lacerations resulting in near decapitation.

Whilst the Police searched for more victims after finding photographs of the deceased women on Mr. Jutting’s cellular phone, Mr. Jutting was arrested and appeared in court for a short custody hearing this morning, and was remanded in custody until November 10.

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

The Daily Mail continued to report that 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 Mr. Jutting had been talking ‘delirious nonsense’ to the police when they arrived, with the event making the circumstances surrounding former BGC Partners executive Robin Clark having been shot in the leg en route to work at Shenfield Station in Hertfordshire, England at the beginning of the year pale into insignificance.

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.’

Mr. Jutting is believed to have been in a relationship earlier this year with a woman named Ariane Guarin, known to her friends as Yanie.

The couple uploaded a number of photographs of themselves to their respective Facebook pages in July and August but appear to have broken up by early September. On September 20, a friend took to Mr. Jutting’s Facebook page to say she missed the couple and wished they were still together.

Miss Guarin is understood to have been born in the town of Angono, in the Philippines. The town is in the province of Rizal, and is located approximately 19 miles east of the capital Manila. According to her Facebook page,Miss Guarin was educated at both Angono National High School and Plymouth North High School in Massachusetts, U.S.A.

A police source said they were told Mr. 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 Daily 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.”

Mr. Jutting faces criminal prosecution charges and will reappear in court on November 10.

Picture courtesy of the Daily Mail.

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