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Man who stabbed housemate to death after spying on her found guilty of murder

Stephanie Hansen, 39, was stabbed to death in her home (Metropolitan Police/PA)
Stephanie Hansen, 39, was stabbed to death in her home (Metropolitan Police/PA)

A Jamie Oliver online imposter who stabbed his housemate to death after spying on her with hidden surveillance devices has been found guilty of murder.

Sheldon Rodrigues, 30, became angry and jealous after 39-year-old Stephanie Hansen turned down his advances and began seeing a married work colleague.

He spent 158 hours listening in on her while he was out of the house via a device he had secreted inside a television unit.

He also used the name of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver to send an abusive message via Facebook and complained to their employer, the aviation firm Swissport, jurors were told.

The situation came to a head when Rodrigues learned cargo agent Ms Hansen’s boyfriend had visited her while he was at work.

Shortly before 6am on December 30 2022, Ms Hansen’s lover, father-of-three Celso Cabillan, left her house in Hayes, west London.

Shift worker Rodrigues had been at work the night before, but was listening in on the couple’s date with a Micromax phone hidden in the living room, it was claimed.

He arrived home at 6.50am and shortly after “exploded with rage and brutally attacked” Ms Hansen, who was still in her pyjamas in her bedroom.

He stabbed her repeatedly in the neck and battered her over the head and face with a hairdryer and large fan with “severe force”, jurors were told.

Stephanie Hansen
Ms Hansen was allegedly spied on by the defendant (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Prosecutor Gareth Patterson KC said: “The evidence of the injuries shows that this was a vicious attack, the knife wounds numbering 20 in total, the blunt impact injuries numbering 39.”

Rodrigues, of Willenhall Drive, Hayes, denied murder and claimed he set up recording devices for her safety.

But jurors heard of a “wealth” of evidence against him, despite Rodrigues’ attempts to cast suspicion on the victim’s boyfriend.

On Tuesday, Ms Hansen’s family wept and hugged each other after a jury at the Old Bailey found Rodrigues guilty of her murder.

Judge Judy Khan KC remanded the defendant into custody ahead of his sentencing on March 8.

The defendant’s long-standing obsession was exposed in messages on his phone dating back to 2015.

In 2021, he wrote: “It hurts to see you every day knowing you’ll never like me,” to which she responded: “I do like you but just not enough.”

He appeared not to accept the rejection, offering to change and have surgery to alter his looks, the court was told.

In April 2021, the pair moved into a house in Willenhall Drive to share bills.

Messages between them suggested there had been some intimacy, but Ms Hansen said it was “a mistake” and she only wanted to be friends.

By late 2022, Ms Hansen was in a relationship with Mr Cabillan, which “angered” the defendant, the court was told.

Rodrigues, who worked as a cargo agent at another firm near Heathrow, used a phone hidden in a television unit as a listening device.

He spent more than 100 hours listening in on Ms Hansen while he was at work or visiting India, where he was born, averaging three hours a day, it was claimed.

In November 2022, he emailed Swissport under a fake name to complain that Mr Cabillan was “loitering” about and trying to have an “affair” with his partner.

He bought a “spy camera” device designed to make secret recordings inside the house and monitor Ms Hansen’s new relationship.

A “spy plug” covert listening device was also found on a shelf in the defendant’s bedroom.

On December 8, the defendant allegedly used the name Jamie Oliver to message Ms Hansen’s boyfriend on Facebook saying his girlfriend and child would be kidnapped.

Two days later, he paid a man £100 to drive him around in a car and follow Mr Cabillan, it was alleged.

Mr Cabillan realised he was being followed and reported it to police, but the defendant denied it.

On December 20, Rodrigues messaged Ms Hansen to say he had been a “psycho” before searching the internet for “how to make a woman fall in love with him”, the court was told.

Jurors were shown CCTV footage of Mr Cabillan leaving Ms Hansen’s home early on December 30.

The defendant was later to claim Mr Cabillan was the killer and wrote a letter to Swissport saying: “He killed my housemate Stephanie Hansen the night he stayed at the house. I found her upon returning home.”

But Mr Patterson said she was alive and well after Mr Cabillan left, as she sent a string of text messages and used Siri on her phone.

She did not leave the house to go to Westfield shopping centre as she had planned, and WhatsApp messages from Mr Cabillan after 7am went unread, jurors were told.

After killing Ms Hansen, the defendant left her body in the bedroom and visited Boots to buy bandages for a cut to his hand – which he claimed he got from “household work”.

The defendant then set about laying a “false defence”, sending text messages to Ms Hansen’s phone asking where she was and pretending she was still at Westfield, it was claimed.

Mr Patterson said: “Of course, he knew fine well exactly where she was, lying on the floor of her bedroom in that small house in which he remained for around 24 hours.

“He eventually rang the emergency services and pretended that he had just found the body unexpectedly.”

Rodrigues went on to lie to an officer at the scene, saying he cut his hand carving a chicken on Christmas Day, although more recent CCTV evidence showed him giving a colleague a “high five” at work.

Jurors were shown a picture of the victim’s bare legs with drops of the defendant’s blood on them.

The defendant’s DNA, most likely from semen, was found on her stomach, jurors were told.