‘Witch cult’ leader sentenced to death for murder and dismembering Tinder date

A 'witch cult' leader has been sentenced to death for murdering a Tinder date after she refused to engage in group sex.

Aubrey Trail and his girlfriend Bailey Boswell had been planning to kill someone before meeting Sydney Loofe, 24, on the popular dating app in 2017.

Trail was found guilty of first-degree murder and criminal conspiracy over the killing in a court in Wilber, in the US state of Nebraska.

The killer recanted his earlier claim that Ms Loofe died of erotic asphyxiation during rough sex and admitted that he strangled her with an electric cord, as prosecutors had alleged.

Trail, 54, said he tied up Ms Loofe and killed her because she "freaked out" when he told her about his lifestyle, which included defrauding antique dealers and group sex with Boswell and other women.

Ms Loofe's remains were cut into 14 parts and later found in rubbish bags, alongside sex toys, a dog leash and a plastic sauna suit.

During the trial witnesses, who remained anonymous, referred to Trail as the "vampire leader" of a "witch cult".

Justifying the death sentence, Saline County District Court judge Vicky Johnson said: "Trail's words and actions demonstrate he had no regard for the life of Sydney Loofe beyond his own personal pleasures."

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The judge said the murderer also boasted about his actions, telling police officers that Boswell had consumed Ms Loofe's blood, while he had bought supplies to commit and cover up the crime such as tools and bleach.

Trail was not present for significant sections of the trial after he slashed his neck in court and yelled: "Bailey is innocent, and I curse you all."

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Despite being sentenced to death, the state of Nebraska reportedly does not have the resources to carry out capital punishment.

There has only been one execution in the state since 1997, when double murderer Carey Dean Moore becoming the first person in Nebraska put to death by lethal injection in 2018.

Boswell's case will be heard before a three-judge panel later this month with prosecutors claiming that she should also receive the death penalty.

The co-conspirator was convicted of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder and improper disposal of human remains last October.

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