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Hospital order for Bury man who admitted unlawful killing

PUBLISHED: 14:29 05 March 2018 | UPDATED: 14:37 05 March 2018

Geoffrey Caton, who was stabbed in his home in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: SUFFOLK POLICE

Geoffrey Caton, who was stabbed in his home in Bury St Edmunds. Picture: SUFFOLK POLICE

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A mentally ill Suffolk man who is awaiting sentence for stabbing a man 65 times has been made the subject of an interim hospital order.

Mourad Belarbi, 43, of Lake Avenue, Bury St Edmunds, pleaded guilty at a hearing at Ipswich Crown Court last year to unlawfully killing 57-year-old Geoffrey Caton on the grounds of diminished responsibility and sentence was adjourned for a psychiatric report.

Today, Judge Martyn Levett agreed to make an interim hospital order to allow a full psychiatric assessment to be carried out on Belarbi before he is sentenced.

At the earlier hearing the court heard that Mr Caton and Belarbi were both drug addicts and in the weeks leading up to the killing they had spent time together using amphetamine, cocaine and cannabis.

On the day before the killing in July last year Belarbi had held an air gun to Mr Caton’s head but had later apologised and said he was “only playing”.

The next day Mr Caton, Belarbi and a neighbour had used drugs at Mr Caton’s flat in Cumberland Avenue, Bury, and when the neighbour left, Mr Caton and Belarbi had been “happily” watching TV together.

Thirty minutes later Belarbi banged at the neighbour’s door with blood on his face and hands and still holding a blood stained knife he had used to stab Mr Caton.

Belarbi told the shocked neighbour that Mr Caton was “evil” and was “the Devil.”

The alarm was raised and on finding that the door to Mr Caton’s first floor flat was locked an army reservist climbed up a ladder and saw a “scene of devastation” through the window.

“He could see Mr Caton’s body in the living room surrounded by a great deal of mess,” said Andrew Jackson, prosecuting.

A paramedic who attended the scene declared Mr Caton dead at 6.20pm.

A post-mortem examination found Mr Caton had been stabbed more than 65 times, mainly to the torso, and the cause of the death was blood loss caused by the stab wounds.

A pathologist who carried out the post mortem examination described the blows as being delivered with “severe force”.

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