Man Admits Killing Local Pensioner Joseph Griffiths

Aaron De Silva, 21 also guilty of aggravated burglary

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A burglar has admitted killing pensioner Joseph Griffiths in his Fulham home in November 2012.

Aaron De Silva, 21, pleaded guilty to entering a house in Hazlebury Road, off Wandsworth Bridge Road and killing 73-year-old Mr Griffiths on November 10 2012.

At the Old Bailey, De Silva said: "Not guilty to murder but guilty to manslaughter by diminished responsibility."

The prosecution said the plea was unacceptable to the Crown and he will face trial for murder.

De Silva, of Warwick Road, Earls Court, also pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated burglary at Mr Griffiths' house.

Judge Timothy Pontius adjourned the case for a further hearing on February 14 with the trial due to start on February 19.

Mr Griffiths, who was a married man with two grown up sons, was stabbed to death after hearing an intruder in the house in the early hours of the morning.

After his death, his wife Judith and sons, who helped him Shelby car mechanics in New King's Road, released a statement saying his death had left a 'great void in our lives'.

Their statement continued: "Joe was a husband, father and grandfather, he was a successful businessman who embraced life and lived it to the full.

"He took great pride in his business and it gave him immense satisfaction that three generations of the Griffiths family were employed there.

"Joe's sudden and tragic demise has shocked and saddened all who knew and loved him, and has left a great void in all our lives. We will miss his forthright views and wicked sense of fun.

"Joe leaves behind a wife, two sons and seven grandchildren, who all completely adore and miss him.

"The support from our friends, our customers, old and new has been overwhelming, we greatly appreciate it."

February 13, 2014