How to Murder a Millionaire

Do you remember the old Marilyn Monroe flick How to Marry a Millionaire? Well this title, a play on that phrase, is all about the opposite. More accurately, it’s actually about a millionaire’s daughter who murders a next door neighbour after detailing how to kemi_adeyoolacommit the perfect murder in an as yet unreleased murder manual. Pretty, 17-year-old Kemi Adeyoola had it better than a lot of other children of Nigerian immigrants that lived in London. Her father was a millionaire and property management tycoon. She attended exclusive schools. Yet Kemi couldn’t help but get herself in trouble. Kemi served a six month sentence at a juvenile facility for shoplifting. Shoplifting? Her father’s worth a million clams and she runs around stealing stuff? Whatever.

Her father, millionaire Bola Adeyoola denounced his daughter as “evil… I don’t even like her.”  His last contact with Kemi and her sisters was when the Kemi was eleven years old. Her mother had received 3 or 4 million in a divorce settlement, yet oddly, the sisters worked as escorts for money. While serving her sentence for theft, Kemi kept a journal in which she described her plan to live a happy life. First on her list was to lose 4 stone (56 pounds) and second was to earn £3 million by robbing and killing older women. In the 18 page inspirational work that Kemi titled, “Prison and After. Making Life Count from 20 August to 20 November 2004“, she wrote in detail how she would go about finding her victims and how she would carry out the killings. “She must be wealthy, quite elderly and defenseless,” Kemi wrote. That seems fair. The document was found during a routine cell search in Bullwood Hall, Essex. Kemi said it was a draft for a crime novel she planned to write. Incredibly prison officials bought into it. A psychiatric report said there was nothing to suggest Kemi could commit such a crime. The officials also bought the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco from Kemi. 

mendelKemi was released after serving three months of her sentence. Four months later Kemi found her target, her 84-year-old neighbour Anne Mendel. Poor Anne was left alone in her home for only one hour while her husband, Leonard Mendel, 81, collected flight tickets for a trip they planned to take to Israel. In that small window of time in March 2005 in Golders Green, north-west London, Kemi entered the home and stabbed the helpless Anne 14 times. Before the crime, Kemi cut the hall phone wires. During the murder, Anne’s blood covered the walls. A tiny speck of DNA left on Anne’s finger, known as mutual transfer, linked Kemi to the crime. 

The press dubbed Kemi the Murder Manual Girl. How poetic. At Kemi’s trial, the prosecution put forth that Anne Mendel had been chosen by Kemi Adeyoola as a soft target so that she could do a ‘dry run‘ of the plans she had laid out in her still unpublished murder manual. The judge sentenced her to life with the order that at least 20

EveningSTANDARD pg11 Wed28June06.0years must be served. At the trial he said, “I regret to say I have formed the view that you are a remorseless and cold-blooded killer who is a serious and continuing danger to the public. I believe that your motive was to draw attention to yourself by the act of murder. I think you wanted to experience what it felt like to kill someone in cold blood, possibly so that you could write about it, but more probably so that you could boast about it and possibly even do it again. You are intelligent, manipulative and skilled in deceit way beyond your years”

Bola blames everyone but himself for Kemi’s crimes. “If I could turn back time I’d like to think I could stop Kemi but I was told I was powerless to do anything.” Touching. As news of Kemi’s sentence broke, the London Evening Standard did an expose on Bola Adeyoola’s own criminal past.If he could turn back time perhaps he could have stopped himself from his own crimes.

One person expressed pity for Kemi.  Henry Blaxland QC, defending, said: “The court rosehas before it somebody who is, on the face of it, emotionally damaged. She finds herself utterly alone in the world given that her family have entirely washed their hands of her.” Perhaps Kemi is the one who should be washing blood off her hands although that’s unlikely. Kemi hasn’t shown any remorse or improvement in her behaviour. In fact she seems to have adjusted quite well to the cement walls of her cell. One evening, Kemi left her hair extensions on a pillow to fool guards into thinking she lay in bed while she “went to romp” with another inmate. Nasty. The inmate whom Kemi “befriended” was none other than Rose West, the notorious sex slayer of crimes dubbed  The House of Horrors.

As a final twist of the knife so to speak, Bola disowned Kemi publicly to the press. Bola claimed that after his wife left him and barred him from seeing Kemi, he once passed money and messages to her through her grandparents. He blamed his daughter’s obsession with money and material goods on her mother.

“Kemi was very kind, very loving when she was young,” said her father. “She has changed.” Detailing his recent history with his daughters, he claimed he gave his daughters a flat to live in but after their three-month licence period elapsed, they reacted violently against his advice to go straight. “They just left,” he said. “They came up to my office and smashed it up. I don’t think they have respect for me. I don’t think they have respect for anyone.”

You don’t say.


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