Garage worker, 36, pleads not guilty to the murder of primary school teacher Sabina Nessa  1

Garage worker, 36, pleads not guilty to the murder of primary school teacher Sabina Nessa 

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Garage worker, 36, accepts responsibility for killing primary school teacher Sabina Nessa, but pleads not guilty to her murder


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A garage worker has accepted responsibility for the killing of primary school teacher Sabina Nessa.

Koci Selamaj, 36, travelled to London from his home in Eastbourne on the south coast to carry out what the prosecution alleges was a ‘pre-meditated and predatory’ attack.

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It is claimed he struck 28-year-old Ms Nessa with a 2ft long weapon as she walked through Cator Park in Kidbrooke, south-east, London, on her way to meet a friend on September 17.

The body of Ms Nessa, who taught a year one class at Rushey Green Primary School in Catford, was found nearly 24 hours later covered with grass near a community centre in the park.

It is believed that Ms Nessa’s attacker was a complete stranger to her.

Garage worker Koci Selamaj, 36, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of primary school teacher Sabina Nessa (pictured) during a hearing at the Old Bailey held earlier today

Garage worker Koci Selamaj, 36, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of primary school teacher Sabina Nessa (pictured) during a hearing at the Old Bailey held earlier today

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Koci Selamaj  (pictured here in a court sketch at an earlier hearing) was arrested in Eastbourne in the early hours of September 26. Selamaj has pleaded not guilty to the charge of murder

Koci Selamaj  (pictured here in a court sketch at an earlier hearing) was arrested in Eastbourne in the early hours of September 26. Selamaj has pleaded not guilty to the charge of murder

Selamaj, from Eastbourne, East Sussex, was arrested in the seaside town and charged with her murder.

On Thursday, Selamaj, an Albanian national, appeared at the Old Bailey for a plea and directions hearing.

The defendant, who is in custody, entered a formal not guilty plea to murder.

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But it was indicated on his behalf that he accepted responsibility for killing Ms Nessa.

Members of the victim’s family sat in court a few metres from the defendant in the dock who was assisted by an Albanian interpreter.

Bearded Selamaj, who wore a facemask and grey T-shirt, spoke only to confirm his identity and entered.

Senior judge, Mr Justice Wall, set a further hearing on February 25 next year.

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He set a trial of up to five weeks from June 7 next year.

The defendant was remanded into custody.

This is a breaking news story. We will bring you more information as soon as it becomes available. 

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