Judges have sentenced Mikhail Razvan Oprea, a 36-year-old Romanian, to the maximum sentence of 25 years in jail for abduction, rape, homicide and desecration of a corpse.
Oprea also was ordered to pay €110,000 in damages to the family of Bruna Nunes, the 17-year-old schoolgirl found was found bludgeoned to death in scrubland at Palazim, Aljezur.
Bruna was reported missing on December 11th, 2014 after she had failed to return from school in Lagos. She lived with her mother, Lília Silva, and her stepfather, Mikhail Rasvan Oprea in Aldeia Nova about a kilometre from Aljezur.
Bruna Nunes’ body was discovered in scrubland near her house after a four day search. She had been tied up, sexually assaulted and bludgeoned to death. The autopsy reported the cause of death as 'laceration of the brain with fractured skull’ - after being hit several times with an axe.
Locals had always suspected the stepfather, who fled Portugal two days after the girl had gone missing, and have been proved right after a police operation lasting nearly three years.
The 35-year-old was tracked down and identified in 2016 by Romanian police who kept him under surveillance while legal steps were taken by the Portuguese authorities to obtain his arrest and extradition.
Next, Oprea was subject to a European Arrest Warrant and was picked up by Romanian police on January 17th, 2017 and shipped back to the Algarve.
The defendant then was accused by the Public Prosecutor's Office of qualified homicide, abduction, attempted rape, sexual coercion and desecration of Bruna Nunes’ corpse in December 2014.
According to the judgment, the accused "acted freely and conscientiously, against the will of the victim," and exerted extreme physical violence, after having kidnapped, bound and killed his stepdaughter by raining blows to her head with a blunt object. He then hid the body, tried to erase the traces of the crime and fled to Romania.