A 'high class escort' who was tragically found bludgeoned to death in a flat in Crawley led a double life as a city socialite and IT worker.
Christina Abbotts enjoyed partying and attending events like Royal Ascot with her friends, but unknown to many she sold sex on the internet, a court heard.
Airline pilot Howard Joseph told Lewes Crown Court today that he had ‘absolutely no idea’ of what his dear friend Christina really did for a living.
Beloved by her family and friends, Christina was sadly found dead in her flat by police in the early hours of May 26, this year after not turning up to her birthday party.
City banker Zahid Naseem, who was discovered just metres away her Christina’s body is standing trial for her murder.
Naseem, a 48-year-old father of two from Amersham, denies the offence.
A statement from Christina’s father was read out in court this morning. He recalled that his daughter was ‘always a popular child with lots of friends’.
He continued: “Christina lived in various places around London.
“I am not fully aware of what Christina did for a living however I knew that she did travel with her job: Brazil, Miami, Mexico.”
The court heard that Christina texted him saying ‘Love you, we will go out Monday’ on May 25 this year, her birthday.
Mr Abbotts said: “This was the last time I heard from Christina.
“The next thing I knew police came to the house saying that a body of a female had been found and they believed it was Christina.”
Roshan Pariag had known Christina for about eight years at the time of her death. He described her as ‘always happy’ and someone who was ‘always willing to give anybody a chance’.
Giving evidence in court, Mr Pariag said: “I was under the impression she was an IT consultant.”
While he had suspicions she may have worked as an escort, he told the court these were only confirmed after her tragic death.
On the night of her birthday, 25 May, Mr Pariag said he became increasingly alarmed when she did not show up to her party in London.
Eventually he did drive to her flat in Crawley and called 999 when she did not answer the door.
Police officers broke into the flat and he was forced to wait downstairs.
He said: “I could tell by looking at their faces that something tragic had happened.”
Commercial airline pilot Howard Joseph also gave evidence about his friend Christina.
The pair had gone on a trip to Rome together and often enjoyed attending the theatre and polo.
Mr Joseph said he believed Christina’s presence at events like Royal Ascot was to promote the services of the company she worked for at the time.
“I believed she had an IT job of sorts, I did not know much about that.”
Asked if he knew she sold sex for money, he said: “I absolutely did not know.”
Zahid Naseem denies murder. The trial continues.