Jerusalem Couple Suspected of Killing Neighbor, Burying Body in Nearby Yard

Couple nabbed after teens spotted them on their way to bury the body ■ Suspects' attorneys say that they are suffering from mental health problems

The spot in the garden where the body was found.
Israel Police

The police arrested a Jerusalem couple on Sunday suspected of murdering their neighbor, cutting up his body and burying it in a garden near their home. The couple, Andrei Vilchersky and Claire Krovaly, both 44, were arrested after two teenagers reported seeing the suspects by chance on their way to bury the body.

The couple, who live in southern Jerusalem, told the police that they were on bad terms with the victim, 59, and they admitted their involvement in the murder.

The investigation began early Saturday morning when the teens reported seeing the couple pulling a wagon containing a large black plastic bag, and the police came to examine the scene. A few hours later, a friend of the victim came to the police station and reported that he had not been able to contact him for a few days and that he had gone to the man’s house and found the door open.

In a search in and around the house, the police found an axe, a butcher’s knife and large pliers that were allegedly used in the murder. Near the suspects’ home, the police found a walled, locked garden. A search revealed a recently dug pit containing body parts.

The police believe that Vilchersky and Krovaly attacked the victim a few days ago and cut up his body, and then buried the parts on early Saturday morning in the nearby garden.

The attorneys representing Vilchersky, Ariel Herman and Anna Brill of the Public Defender’s Office, said their client was “known for years to the mental health authorities and has even been treated by them." They added: "The suspect is suffering severe mental problems and is cooperating as much as he can with investigators. We are waiting for the police to complete their investigation and examine the entirety of circumstances that led to the event.”

Attorney Nael Zahalka, Krovaly’s public defender, said: “The women is under treatment by mental health authorities and lives on a disability pension. She is cooperating with the investigators and denies involvement in the victim’s death.”