#GruesomeCrimes,#TopStory : A former Albanian special forces commando,trained killer,slaughtered his grandparents in UK

Vital Dapi lived a double life in the UK and Albania for 17 years before he killed grandparents Peter and Sylvia Stuart. The former Albanian special forces commando targeted the couple in a 'callous' attack at their Suffolk cottage 

Vital Dapi alias Ali Qazimaj

An Albanian who brutally murdered two pensioners used a stolen identity to claim asylum and live in Britain illegally for nearly two decades.

In a case that exposed a litany of immigration blunders, violent criminal Vital Dapi lived a double life in the UK and Albania for 17 years before he killed grandparents Peter and Sylvia Stuart. 


The former Albanian special forces commando targeted the couple in a 'callous' attack at their Suffolk cottage because he thought they were millionaires and he needed cash to cover massive gambling debts.

Detectives admitted they knew 'precious little' about him when he went on the run last year after Mr Stuart, 75, was discovered dumped in a ditch with nine 'extreme' stab wounds. The body of retired insurance clerk Mrs Stuart, 69, has never been found.

Dapi was arrested in Luxembourg and admitted his true identity, but British officials did not believe him and he was put on trial under his false name, Ali Qazimaj.

Vita Dapi murdered retired couple Sylvia and Peter Stuart, pictured together above

Here Vita Dapi, above left, is pictured receiving British citizenship from the then Thurrock mayor Ian Harrison, above right, in 2005

Now, after a jury at Ipswich Crown Court took just three hours to convict Dapi, it can be revealed that he:
Sneaked into Britain in September 1999 clinging to the fuel tank of a truck;
Was granted asylum within six months after telling border officials he was fleeing the war in Kosovo where his entire family had been a victims of ethnic cleansing;
Proudly posed next to a portrait of the Queen at his UK citizenship ceremony in an Essex town hall in 2005 – and sent the picture home to his mother in Albania;
Made regular trips home to his family in Albania, where he retained a passport and ID card in his real name and worked as a suspected hitman around the Balkans;
Was arrested three times in the UK before the murders, without the authorities realising he was living here under a false name.

Last night MPs questioned the 'extraordinary' failings that had allowed Dapi to live in the country illegally for so long.

The compulsive gambler, who spent up to £1,000 a day at bookmakers, killed the Stuarts to fund his addiction after being told they were millionaires who had easy access to cash, the court was told.

He made reconnaissance trips in his car near the Stuarts' remote Brick Kiln Cottage in Weybread, near Eye in Suffolk, in the weeks before the murders last summer.

Police found retired technician Mr Stuart's body on June 3. Dapi was also convicted of Mrs Stuart's murder, after her hair was found in his car. After killing the keen line-dancers – who had been married for 48 years – Dapi drove to Dover and fled across the Channel by ferry after using Mrs Stuart's bank card to take money from a cash machine.

Lies and blunders that led to murders
In Kosovo: The innocent Ali Qazimaj and his wife Ardiana 
A series of blunders allowed Albanian double killer Vital Dapi to claim asylum under a false name and live undetected in Britain for 17 years:
1999 Dapi sneaks into Britain by clinging on to the fuel tank of a truck on a ferry from the Netherlands to Harwich in Essex, after telling relatives he wants to 'serve Tony Blair'
2000 Uses a stolen Kosovo passport in the name of Ali Qazimaj and an invented story about his family being ethnically cleansed in the Yugoslav civil war to successfully claim asylum here
2005 Granted full British citizenship in his false name and poses next to a portrait of the Queen at his citizenship ceremony at an Essex town hall, before sending the picture home to his family in Albania.
2006, 2010 and 2013 Arrested in Britain, once for assault, without the authorities realising he is living under a false identity
2005 to 2016 Makes repeated trips back to his family in Albania, where he keeps a passport and ID card updated in his real name
2009 Offers to help a relative in Albania also get stolen Kosovan identity papers to sneak into Britain
2015 Travels from UK to Albania and through Kosovo to carry out a suspected contract killing in Serbia
2016 Dapi finally admits his real name after being arrested for double murder, but his name is not thoroughly investigated and he is put on trial in his false identity as prosecutors initially mistakenly insist it is a 'lie' that he is Vital Dapi

After his capture, he admitted being Dapi but said he had never been to the UK until his extradition, or used the name Qazimaj.

But worryingly, little was done to investigate this and prosecutors initially told the jury his claim to be Vital Dapi was a 'lie'. In fact, it was one of the few things he was telling the truth about.

The son of a plumber, Vital Dapi was born in 1972 in Elbasani, a town two hours from the Albanian capital of Tirana.

His sister Esmeralda Hasko said: 'He had a dream of the West. Every time he saw the Queen or Tony Blair on the television he would say, 'I want to serve you. I want to work for you'.'

In December 1998, Dapi paid a people trafficker to get him to Italy, and from there made his way to the Netherlands, where he smuggled himself on to a freight ship to Harwich in Essex on September 25, 1999.

His uncle, Murat Dapi, said: 'He clung to the fuel tank of a lorry for the entire journey. When he arrived in Britain, they couldn't believe he was still alive.'

In the UK he spent six months in a refugee camp. His brother-in-law, Ingrid Hasko, said: 'Vital bought a Yugoslavian passport from a Kosovar and switched the picture for his own.

'He knew that he needed to have documents from Kosovo to get permanent residency in England.'

To prevent the authorities doing background checks, Dapi told them his entire family had been wiped out. One of his cousins said: 'The English authorities believed his story, like they believed so many stories.'

Within six months he was granted asylum followed by permanent residency and citizenship in 2005.

Despite his new identity as Ali Qazimaj, he maintained a double life, returning to Albania several times a year where he retained citizenship as Dapi.

After working as a driver, shop assistant and in the Holiday Inn hotel in Islington, north London, Dapi settled in Tilbury, Essex, and acted as carer for the father and stepmother of the Stuarts' son-in-law, Steve Paxman, which is how he came to hear about the couple he would eventually kill.

In 2015, he carried out a suspected hit in Serbia after travelling from Albania, and later boasting to Mr Paxman about carrying out a 'contract killing'. The following year, desperate for more cash, he attacked the Stuarts.

Jurors yesterday found Dapi guilty after prosecutor Karim Khalil QC told them: 'He is an arrogant man, he is a professional deceiver, he is a callous murderer.'

Tory MP Charlie Elphicke said: 'This is an astonishing and extremely worrying story. It yet again underlines the vital importance of border security, tough checks and making sure people arriving are who they say they are.'

The Home Office said it could not comment on individual cases. Dapi will be sentenced today – under the name of Ali Qazimaj.

Tell us where Mum's body is, daughter begs twisted killer

The daughter of Sylvia Stuart yesterday begged 'twisted' killer Vital Dapi to reveal where he had hidden her mother's body.

Christy Paxman, 42, said she hoped Dapi would one day have the 'moral courage' to reveal where her mother's remains were and give her family some peace after the 'senseless' murders of her parents.

Mother-of-one Mrs Paxman reported Mrs Stuart, 69, and her father, Peter, 75, missing last May, after they had failed to turn up at their line-dancing club.

Inquiry: Police at Christy Paxman's home. She is the daughter of pensioner Sylvia Stuart and her husband Peter who were murdered last year

Mr Stuart, a retired Tate & Lyle sugar factory worker, and his wife were last seen alive on May 29 when they were filmed on CCTV visiting Goodies farm shop in Pulham Market near Diss, Norfolk – six miles from their home.

Police eventually found Mr Stuart's battered body on June 3, face-down in a ditch and hidden under a tarpaulin, 50ft from the cottage he had renovated himself after retiring to the country a few years earlier.

But Mrs Stuart's body has not been recovered despite a massive search by police who followed 900 lines of inquiry.

Dapi was charged with both murders after Mrs Stuart's hairs were found in his abandoned car after he fled abroad.

Mrs Paxman and her husband Steven, who had lived next door to the Stuarts in Suffolk before moving to Leicestershire, gasped with relief when the guilty verdicts were announced at Ipswich Crown Court.

Mrs Paxman said outside court: 'To the twisted individual who committed this wicked crime, we hope you spend the rest of your miserable existence reflecting on the utter senselessness and brutality of what you did to two innocent people.'

She added: 'Maybe one day you will find the moral courage to tell us where Mum is so we can give her and our family some final peace.'

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