CCTV Footage Shows Backpacker On Tinder Date Hours Before Being Strangled

Grace died either on or just before her 22nd birthday while backpacking in New Zealand. Source AAPMore

On Thursday, jurors were shown security footage of the young woman and the defendant as they drank at various bars throughout the city. Her body was found in a suitcase a week later, buried in the Waitakere Ranges.

There is no argument from either the prosecution or defence that Grace Millane died in the CityLife hotel room on 1 or 2 December 2018.

The Crown says the 27-year-old strangled her in his central Auckland apartment last December - something his defence says was accidental.

This morning she told the jury luminol testing identified two probable blood stains between the bed and the wardrobe; one 70cm and another 30cm in diameter.

No buckets, however, were found in the apartment during the police search.

"The shape of probable blood staining showed strong support for the proposition that clean up of blood had occurred in this area".

With reference to a photograph of footprints in the apartment shown with the use of luminol, Ms Crenfeldt said this showed somebody with blood on their feet had moved around the room and transferred blood to those areas.

Ms Crenfeldt couldn't determine how the blood had dripped but said it could been cast off from a body or fallen from a mop after being diluted with water.

Ms Millane, a marketing graduate from Wickford, Essex, had visited South America, including Chile, Patagonia and Peru, before she disappeared after arriving in New Zealand in November previous year.

Evidence of a possible clean-up, she said, included circular marks, small drips of blood, footprints and smears.

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Millane had been dead for over a week before an autopsy was performed.

BLOOD stains within the resort room the place Grace Millane was killed present that there had been a "clear up operation", a court docket heard at this time.

But Ms Crenfeldt said when the carpet was lifted, there was blood visible on the underside of the carpet, as well as on the underlay and the concrete floor.

Ms Crenfeldt said there was no blood on the Adidas bag but stains were found in the carpet, on the fridge and on the suitcase.

The defendant also watched a string of hardcore pornographic videos on his mobile phone and arranged another Tinder date the day after killing Ms Millane before disposing of her body, the court heard.

Ms Kappatos said she couldn't be certain the level of alcohol in Ms Millane's blood at the time the tests were done would have been the same at the time she died.

Toxicologist Diana Kappatos said testing found no illicit or prescribed drugs in Ms Millane's body.

They bar hopped for three to four hours after meeting at the Sky Tower; drinking cocktails, tequila and jugs of margarita and sangria.

The court heard Ms Ashcroft sent a number of short replies to Ms Millane, including "you have to go to his apartment in the hotel", "bet it's like the top floor" and "I love you too". On November 6, the 21-year-old whose body was found crammed in a suitcase, its murder trial at Auckland High Court took place with the parents as well as the jury watching the CCTV footage of the victim meeting her alleged killer.

The trial continues on Monday and Justice Simon Moore reminded the jury not to engage with others about the case.

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