Ramunas Raulinautis murder: Pair who set victim on fire jailed for life
Two men who beat a Lithuanian man and set him on fire have been jailed for life for the “savage” murder.
Ramunas Raulinautis, 34, had 60% burns and died three days after his clothes were stuffed with paper and set alight in Newport, Cardiff Crown Court heard.
Two others were jailed for grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent and attempted GBH with intent.
Lukas Kalkowski, 30, of Pontypridd, and Stanislaw Gliszczynski, 31, of no fixed address, will both serve 17 years each.
As Gliszczynski was taken down from the dock prison officers had to restrain him.
The four were found guilty on Tuesday for the attack and were sentenced on Wednesday.
The court was told that no motive had ever been found for the killing because both had denied the murder.
The court heard the men were acquaintances and had been drinking together in the hours before the murder.
Polish-born Lysonik and Semrau beat Mr Raulinautis with a copper pipe causing serious internal injuries. They then placed paper in his clothes and set him on fire on the city’s Chepstow Road.
He was found by a passer-by who described it as “a scene from a horror film”.
Ramunas Raulinautis was found in front of the Gateway Express hotel in Newport
Judge Justice Roderick Evans told them: “This was a shockingly violent, cold-blooded murder and you caused your victim extreme suffering.
“You stuffed paper into his clothing and set him alight – even in his injured state he must have been in agony.”
Gwent Police launched Operation Kestrel and worked with the Metropolitan Police and Leicestershire Police to find the men.
Senior investigating officer Det Supt Peter Jones said Mr Raulinautis suffered “a savage and brutal death” and none of the convicted men had shown remorse.
Det Supt Jones said: “It’s tragic that a person loses their life in such a needless way and our condolences remain with Ramunas’s family at this very difficult time.
“It was a difficult and painstaking investigation for my officers, the CPS and prosecuting counsel to bring to court. I must pay tribute to their professionalism and determination to see that justice was done.”
This hopefully brings some peace and comfort to Ramunas’s family”
Det Supt Jones said the investigation was complicated because it was a UK-wide search and involved other forces.
He also paid tribute to the help received from the media.
“As a result of these appeals, the public, including members of the Polish community who have made the UK their home, were very supportive and provided us with information which was key to today’s convictions,” he added.
“I’m satisfied that today’s convictions mean that justice has been done, and this hopefully brings some peace and comfort to Ramunas’s family.”
David Watts, senior crown prosecutor, said the killing was “shockingly violent” and a “cold-blooded attack”.
“This has been a very lengthy and complex trial which has posed a number of challenges to the prosecuting authorities,” he added.
A fifth defendant, Andrezej Gliszczynski, was found not guilty of assisting offenders.