Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Polish woman held ex hostage, court told

A woman lured her ex-boyfriend to a flat so a gang could tie him up and torture him for revenge.

Karoline Fedyna tricked former lover Lukasz Matysek into meeting her so her new boyfriend and his pals could ambush the 20-year-old.

The gang held him captive for 24 hours in a flat in Hove - and even held a party while he was their prisoner - enjoying slices of cake between sessions beating him with baseball bats.

Hove Crown Court was yesterday told how migrant worker Mr Matysek, then 20, was finally rescued as the thugs tried to sneak him out of the building the following day.

Five men and one woman, all Polish, have admitted charges including false imprisonment and blackmail.

They are accused of cutting him with knives and stubbing cigarettes on his body as they used his personal identification number to empty his bank account.

However, they dispute the prosecution's version of events.

Mr Matysek yesterday told the court how his ex-girlfriend invited him to her flat in Brunswick Place, Hove, last year, leading him to believe they could rekindle their romance.

She greeted him with a kiss and welcomed him into the flat on the morning of June 2.

But instead of romance, the prosecution claim she wanted retribution and repayment of rent she said he owed her.

Inside the flat, he was confronted by her new boyfriend, Konrad Kornatowski, and another man, Bartolniez Ziaja, who were both armed with baseball bats.

Mr Matysek said: "I went to the bathroom. They were waiting outside the door. They pulled me from the bathroom and threw me into the lounge.

They started beating me and they tied me up."

After attacking him with the bats, the men covered his eyes and mouth with duct tape and bound his wrists and legs together.

Mr Matysek told the court he was at first beaten every ten minutes and then every hour until early the following morning.

The men demanded his bank PIN and withdrew money from a cash machine on Western Road. While Mr Matysek was still bound and stuffed beneath a table in the flat, his captors then threw a party.

Ziaja is accused of cajoling the guests to join in torturing Mr Matysek as the festivities got under way.

The group were caught after forcing Mr Matysek to call a friend to ask him to put more money in his account.

The friend became suspicious and contacted the police.

Ziaja was arrested after leaving the flat the following morning. Fedyna was arrested inside the flat, where officers found Mr Matysek being led down the stairs. Kornatowski escaped, but was eventually arrested four months later in Warrington.

Fedyna told detectives she was owed ?1,250 by Mr Matysek.

She claimed he had tried to sexually assault her after arriving at the flat.

She said Kornatowsi and Ziaja arrived, punched Mr Matysek and demanded he pay her back the rent he owed.

Fedyna, Ziaja and Kornatowski dispute the prosecution's claims about the way the incident happened including suggestions they used a knife and lit cigarettes on him.

A hearing is under way before Judge Anthony Niblett to decide on those facts before the three are sentenced.

Fedyna, 24, Ziaja, 31 and Kornatowski, 30, have admitted false imprisonment and blackmail.

Lukasz Mokrzynski, 20, pleaded guilty to one charge of assault causing actual bodily harm and one charge of attempting to obtain property by deception.

Michal Maszak, 25, and Patrick Wolski, 21, have both pleaded guilty to one charge of assault causing actual bodily harm.

The case continues.