Madrid, Aug 2 (EFE) .- October 3, 2016, Murcia courts. After testifying for an hour and a half and after a break, Juan Cuenca, the main defendant of the murders three years before the Dutch volleyball player Ingrid Visser and her husband, asks to intervene again: there is no Russian mobster, he paid two hitmen for killing and butchering the marriage.
It is almost the end point of the Visser case that in May 2013 shocked the Murcia region and had a great media impact in the Netherlands. She, 36, now retired, was the player who had worn the shirt of the volleyball team in her country the most times and had played two years, between 2009 and 2011, in the defunct club Atlético Volleyball from Murcia.
Her husband, Lodewijk Severein, also Dutch and twenty years her senior, had unclear investment businesses in various countries. The couple lived in the Netherlands, but she had started fertility treatment in Murcia to get pregnant.
And that was the reason why Ingrid and Lodewijk landed in Alicante on May 13, 2013. The next day they had an appointment at the Murcia clinic, two days later they had a flight back to their country.
The woman was pregnant for a very short time, as the autopsy revealed later, as Efe Homicide investigators from the National Police who traveled from Madrid to collaborate with the investigations recall.
A DEBT OF 60,000 EUROS, A POSSIBLE KIDNAPPING …
The couple, very striking because of their stature close to two meters, rented a car at the Alicante airport and headed to Murcia to stay in a hotel. At eight in the afternoon they left and did not return to sleep.
Interested in how the consultation had gone, the family, a resident of the Netherlands, called the couple several times and none answered. They also contacted the clinic, which also did not know anything about them, but who, at the request of the family, went to the police station to report the disappearance on May 17.
His relatives soon expand the complaint. They already report that the Murcian volleyball club owes the former player about 60,000 euros and that they were going to take the opportunity to speak again with “a certain Lorente”. The police soon find him: he is Juan Cuenca Lorente, a 36-year-old man, former manager and former director of the club who lives in Valencia.
“He was a one hundred percent collaborator with us. He makes two statements and tells us that he knew that the couple was going to come and that they would call him to see each other, but that they had not yet met. He also notes that the husband was looking for Russian investors, but that he did not want to know anything about Russians “, remembers one of the policemen.
A week has passed and the only clue is that the rental car, in which there is nothing unusual, appears parked in front of the volleyball club, while the tram’s security cameras capture both unaccompanied.
The Dutch colony in Murcia is mobilized in search of news about his whereabouts and places hundreds of posters with his photographs. After all, she was a well-known athlete. The Police have several open hypotheses, such as that of a possible kidnapping for economic reasons.
ROSA, THE PROTECTED WITNESS THAT UNLOCKED THE CASE
Homicide investigators are followed without smelling this Cuenca, “a guy with an ego … He just repeats that he is very smart, that he has a high IQ”, highlights one of the police officers who questioned him in several times with another official specialized in economic crimes in Murcia.
“It does not give us a good feeling and we tell the judge, who authorizes to tap the phone.” It was the spring that allowed the disappearances to be resolved, because the first call that Juan Cuenca made on his mobile phone was the one made by a woman named Rosa from Benavente (Zamora).
Soon after, the Murcia Police receives another call from a woman, Rosa, who states that she believes Juan Cuenca is behind the issue of the Dutch. “We were in Madrid and at three in the morning we left for Benavente and others for Murcia again. We had to speak to that woman immediately.”
Rosa’s story begins to shed light on unknowns. She works for Juan, and is the one who rents “La Casa Colorá” for him, a rural accommodation located in a secluded area of Molina de Segura to deal with some Dutch people.
So far everything normal. Rosa goes with her car to the house and Juan follows behind in another vehicle in the company of two “foreign” men, according to the woman, who was in charge of picking up the Dutch couple that afternoon. Juan told him that it was better for him to be in his car because that way they kept them from getting lost.
He did not know anything else, but when he saw the case in the news, he called the man and 091. After hearing his testimony, there were already more than enough reasons to arrest Juan Cuenca and inspect the rural house, apparently very clean, but where the Scientific Police found many remains of blood.
THE RUSSIAN FEAR THAT NEVER APPEARED
During several hours of statement, the detainee, who continually rang his cell phone, did not leave his script about the involvement of “some Russians” and that he was in danger, but finally told them that they were dead and the agents convinced him to to take you to the place, an extensive lemon grove located in the municipality of Alquerías owned by a friend from Cuenca.
“He left us at the entrance of the farm. A colleague with a lot of experience in eye inspections began with an area with more moved earth and, indeed, there were the bodies, dismembered but dressed,” recalls the agent for Efe on the scene of the 27 May 2013, almost two weeks after the couple arrived in Murcia.
The following day, two Romanians, aged 47 and 60, were also arrested. Until the oral trial, and despite the fact that the evidence was more than enough to send them to prison, none revealed what happened that evening of May 13 and 14, 2013.
The Police never found any clues related to Russians or an alleged Danko, the name that Cuenca kept even in the trial as the person who had been at the crime scene and whom he himself was very afraid of.
After dismantling this story himself before the court, what was proven is that one of the accused, Valentin Ion, beat the couple to death and got rid of her. The other arrested, also of Romanian nationality, was released after serving five months in prison as a cover-up.
Juan Cuenca and Valentin Ion were sentenced in 2016 to 34 years in prison each. The shady deals between Cuenca and Ingrid Visser’s husband were behind their deaths, but the brain of the macabre event has never revealed what problem could lead to agreeing about 15,000 euros as a price to two lives. Only an advance of 1,200 euros was paid.
By Laura Camacho
(c) EFE Agency