Spurned Russian mistress masterminded terrifying robbery at ex-lover’s home
A MOTHER was tied up and blindfolded with her daughter in a £100,000 robbery masterminded by her husband’s ex-mistress.
Priya McKenrick and her daughter Scarlett, who was 17 at the time, were subjected to a four-hour ordeal at their home in Alderley Edge in October last year.
Three men broke into the house while they were watching The Apprentice, bound them with cable ties, put blacked-out goggles over their eyes and ear defenders over their ears, threatened them and dragged them around, Crown Court heard.
The robbers eventually left with around £100,000 worth of electrical goods, jewellery, designer clothes, shoes and jewels.
Prosecutor Andrew Ford told the court that the men had been hired to carry out the robbery by Russian businesswoman Karine Solloway, who had had a five-year affair with Priya’s husband, Robert McKenrick.
Solloway, 58, of Park Mews Crescent West in London, denied the charge, claiming she had hired the men to do surveillance and they had carried out the robbery without her knowledge, but a jury found her guilty of conspiracy to rob. Chester
The court heard that, during their affair, Solloway had loaned Mr McKenrick a ‘substantial’ sum of money – anywhere up to around £850,000 – after an issue with one of his ‘business interests’ in Africa resulted in his assets being frozen worldwide and significant legal costs. Mr McKenrick ended their affair in 2013, after which Solloway became ‘obsessed’ with getting her money back, Mr Ford said.
“It was bitter,” he added. “She says he promised her children, and that he would leave his wife for her.”
In September last year, Solloway hired an ex-soldier, who she had met ‘by chance’ through mutual acquaintances, to carry out the robbery at Mr McKenrick’s house and he hired two other men as ‘muscle.’
The ex-soldier and one other man pleaded guilty in an earlier hearing to conspiracy to rob, and were remanded in custody.
The third man, Kimpton Mativenga, 31, of Tanners Close in St Albans, pleaded not guilty and went on trial alongside Solloway.
His defence was that, while he was in the house as the robbery took place, he did not know what was going to happen until they got there, and did not ‘take part’ while it was going on.
When asked why he didn’t leave the house or call the police, he said the ex-soldier – who he had been friends with since 2010 – had threatened him and his family and he was afraid. “These people are militarytrained,” he said. “I was in fear for my life.”
However, the jury rejected his defence and found him guilty of conspiracy to rob.
Solloway was in Moscow at the time of the incident, but the jury were shown transcripts of messages between her and the ex-soldier in the days following the robbery, where they discussed the valuation and sale of jewellery.
Some of the stolen jewellery was later recovered by the police from a jewellers in London.
At one point Solloway sent the