Man who strangled Briton, 74, to death in Spain is jailed for 12 years

Martial arts expert, 47, who strangled expat British pensioner, 71, to death in Spain in a row over unpaid gardening wages is jailed for 12 years

  • Fransisco Javier Becerra strangled Lesley Anne Pearson at her home in 2019
  • The 47-year-old handyman buried the 74-year-old in quicklime in a shallow grave
  • He admitted Ms Person’s homicide and will serve 12 years in prison as a result

A man convicted of killing a British pensioner in Spain and burying her in a shallow grave has been jailed for 12 years. 

Fransisco Javier Becerra admitted strangling Lesley Anne Pearson, 74, and burying her body in quicklime at her home in Algar, Cadiz in July 2019. 

The 47-year-old handyman who is also an expert in martial arts killed the pensioner following a disagreement over money. 

Lesley Anne Pearson, pictured with her brother Stephen Ramsbottom, right, was strangled at her home in Algar, Cadiz in July 2019. Handyman Fransisco Javier Becerra admitted her homicide and burying her body in a shallow grave at her property 

Ms Pearson’s body was found ten days after she was reported missing. Becerra admitted Ms Pearson’s homicide and will serve 12 years in prison

Prosecutors had sought a 15-year jail term for Becerra after he had been convicted of homicide, though three years were reduced from the sentence in recognition of his guilty plea. 

Brother Stephen Ramsbottom told The Mirror: ‘It is not like in England, he gets no reduction.

‘The setence is probably not long enough, but if he received 20 years in England, he would only serve 10. There’s no point in getting upset about it. That’s what’s been decided. We must accept it. I fill nothing towards Javier.

Mr Ramsbottom added: ‘He’s in jail for the next 12 years and I would imagine life in jail in Spain will be tougher than in the UK.’

Algar is one of the many white villages in the province of Cadiz.

It is flanked by two of the most important natural parks in the province, Alcornocales and Grazalema. 

It has around 1,500 inhabitants.

The nearest town is Arcos de la Frontera. The city of Cadiz, which is the provincial capital, is around an hour’s drive away.

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