The family of murdered Harrow lawyer Elizabeth Nnyanzi have spoken out about the killer's jail term and how they will not allow the ordeal to 'destroy this family'.
Speaking on Monday (February 1) Elizabeth's family spoke after the sentencing of her killer , Peter Kibisu at a sentencing hearing earlier that day.
Peter was jailed for life, with a minimum of 27 years, for the rape and murder of Elizabeth in August last year.
Kibisu was a longstanding friend of the Nnyanzi family and had been staying with them on a short-term basis at their home in Northumberland Road in Harrow.
Police arrived at the house at around 5.55pm on August 14, following reports of an unresponsive woman at the location.
Kibisu lied to officers, telling them he had found the rear patio doors ajar on his return from work, and Ms Nnyanzi lying on the floor in the bedroom.
She was pronounced dead at the scene, with a post-mortem giving the cause of death as asphyxiation.
Peter Kibisu was arrested on August 15 and charged with the murder of the 31-year-old.
'Wicked and selfish act'
Elizabeth's family spoke out about the sentencing and talked about their “loving” family member.
"Elizabeth Nnyanzi was a beautiful, clever, vibrant, and loving daughter, big sister, relative, and friend to many," they said in a statement.
"Her life was cruelly cut short by this heinous crime which we will not allow to destroy our family. Instead we shall continue the good work she started as a way to honour her memory, and her great belief that good triumphs over evil.
"The careful investigation by the police and the thorough analysis of the case by the learned Judge has meant that our faith in the justice system has not been shaken."
They continued: "We are relieved that Peter Kibisu, who murdered and raped Elizabeth, will be imprisoned for a long time, so that he will no longer pose a threat to the public.
"Peter's family and our family grew up together and we regarded him as part of our family. We could never have imagined that our trust could have been betrayed in this way. His wicked and selfish act has also greatly damaged friendships made over a number of decades.
"We want to thank everybody who has genuinely supported us. It has been the longest wait of our lives, but our faith in the legal system has remained strong and justice for Elizabeth has prevailed.
"We will always remember Elizabeth as a people's person and we will remain in touch with her extensive supportive network to bring about positive change.
"Her memory will live in our hearts forever. Thank you."
'Caring, intelligent and hugely gifted young woman'
A police inspector also commented on the sentencing, describing Kibisu's attempts at concealing the truth as a “callous attempt”.
Detective Chief Inspector Tim Duffield said: "Not only did Peter Kibisu brutally rape and murder a lifelong family friend in her own home, he then went on to concoct a version of events in a callous attempt to conceal the truth.
"Kibisu had ample opportunity to admit his role in Elizabeth's death at an early stage, but instead chose to put her family through the further ordeal of a potential criminal trial.
"It was only when confronted with a whole raft of evidence gathered during the police investigation that he finally accepted his guilt.
"Elizabeth's friends and family have been cruelly robbed of a caring, intelligent and hugely gifted young woman.
"My thoughts go out to them at this very difficult time."