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Cambridge security guard accused of stealing £515K diamond denies pretending to be other people

A Cambridge man accused of stealing a half million pound from the ex-husband of Formula One heiress Petra Ecclestone has…

By admin , in Cambridge , at December 8, 2020 Tags:

A Cambridge man accused of stealing a half million pound from the ex-husband of Formula One heiress Petra Ecclestone has denied pretending to be multiple other people.

Former security guard Justinas Ivaskevicius, 34, of Fallowfield, Cambridge, is on trial over the alleged theft of a 16.8-carat fancy yellow diamond ring from gold dealer James Stunt in December 2017.

The diamond is said to have been part of a haul taken during a £30 million raid on Mr Stunt’s luxury central London home.

Prosecutors allege that Ivaskevicius tried to sell the diamond to a jewellery dealer in Antwerp, Belgium while posting as Sebastian Thomasz, before it was sent to the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) for certification.

A jury at Southwark Crown Court previously heard from commercial gemstone dealer Alexander Rozmarin, who said he was asked to help certify a precious stone by a man he knew as Sebastian Thomasz Kowal, who he first met at a jewellery fair in Gdansk, Poland, in 2012 or 2013.

The court also previously heard that Ivaskevicius denies being Mr Kowal.

Under prosecution cross-examination on Monday, the defendant was asked why an email address apparently used by Mr Kowal was found on three phones he had used.

The jury heard that he normally used second-hand phones, including one given to him by his brother’s girlfriend.

Prosecutor Martyn Bowyer read to the court an email sent by “Mr Kowal” to the GIA asking what evidence they had that the diamond was stolen.

Addressing Ivaskevicius he said: “Thomasz Kowal, the man with Mr Stunt’s diamond, is using the email address [email protected] How does that very same email address get into your brother’s girlfriend’s phone in 2016?”

Ivaskevicius replied: “It must be some email got stuck in the system somehow.

“I can’t answer that, I’m afraid.”

Pressed again for an explanation, he added: “No, I can’t help you with that, you should ask them.”

He added: “I’ve never seen this email on iPhones I had, I’ve never seen it anywhere.”

The court heard that when Mr Rozmarin tried to call a number he had for Mr Kowal in June 2018, it was received by a handset Ivaskevicius said he had lent to a Mr Tomas or Thomas Kaskur.

Asked why “Mr Kaskur” was apparently answering, Ivaskevicius said: “I’ve never seen this number before and you might want to ask Thomas about that.”

Ivaskevicius earlier admitted in court to throwing one of his phones out of a window while sitting on the toilet when police came to his home, saying it could have been a “twitch”.

The defendant, who holds a banking and finance degree, also said he had hidden £30,000 at his home because he liked “to control my own cash”.

Asked why the money was concealed in a doorbell casing, cavities behind kitchen cabinets and in the attic, he said it was to “spread the risk… just in case some burglars came in”.

The jury was told that Ivaskevicius had helped “Mr Kaskur” – who the defendant said was a mechanic – secure the lease of an industrial unit in Cambridge to set up a garage.

But Mr Bowyer said the Home Office had “no record” of a Mr Kaskur on its system.

He also said an officer from Cambridge City Council had previously identified the Mr Kaskur she dealt with as the defendant.

Ivaskevicius complained in court that an image of him had been “the brightest” when the officer picked it out of nine others, but admitted he had not objected to the identification process at the time.

The court was told that a written defence statement said Ivaskevicius had provided translation help to a Mr Aurimas Adomavicius, including when he had to “speak to his solicitors in relation to a diamond that had… been seized”.

But in court Ivaskevicius said this was “wrong” and that parts of his statement had been “misunderstood” due to problems communicating with his lawyers while in prison.

The court heard that two different solicitors’ firms communicated with Mr Adomavicius’s Skype number on calls via the handset Ivaskevicius threw out of his bathroom window.

Ivaskevicius said he did not have the phone at the time the calls were made in June and August 2018.

Asked if anyone within his circle of friends had ever “expressed an interest in a diamond”, Ivaskevicius replied: “No”.

Mr Bowyer put to Ivaskevicius: “That’s what you do, you pretend to be other people.”

“That’s not what I do,” Ivaskevicius replied.

Mr Bowyer later suggested: “You, Kaskur, Kowal, Adomavicius, are one and the same person, aren’t they?”

Ivaskevicius said: “No.”

Ivaskevicius, of Fallowfield in Cambridge, denies theft, two counts of possessing criminal property, possessing an identity document with improper intention, producing a class B drug and four counts of handling stolen goods.

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