Minimum of Thirty Years in Jail for Murderer of Ealing Woman

Armen Aristakesyan befriended his victim to steal her cash

Armen Aristakesyan, 43 of Uxbridge Road, W13 had killed 58-year-old Serafima Meshaka
Armen Aristakesyan killed 58-year-old Serafima Meshaka


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A man who attacked and killed a woman in her Ealing home has been given a jail sentence of at least thirty years.

The jury at the Old Bailey decided this Wednesday (13 October) that 43-year-old Armen Aristakesyan, 43 of Uxbridge Road, W13 had killed 58-year-old Serafima Meshaka.

He had become heavily indebted and planned to use money he stole from her to pay back money he owed. The court had earlier been told how Aristakesyan owed several unlicensed lenders large sums of money including a six figure sum to a loan shark known as ‘The Turk’ and payment was due shortly on some of the loans.

He was aware that Ms Meshaka had a significant amount of cash in her flat as she was getting building work done. He had known her for several years and befriended her in the months prior to her death in order to gain her trust. His victim looked after Russian students in the UK and worked part-time as a personal assistant to a Russian/Israeli businessman.

Serafima Meshaka
Serafima Meshaka

Aristakesyan tried to arrange that she was out of her flat at the opera while he took the cash.

Police were called on Wednesday, 18 September 2019 to the flat in the block in Haven Green Court after concerns for her welfare were raised.

She was found lying face down in the bathroom of her third floor apartment at around 1:25pm and was pronounced dead a short time later. There were no signs of any forced entry or disturbance.

Officers noted an injury to the back of her head and contacted colleagues from the Specialist Crime Command.

A special post-mortem examination deemed the cause of death as severe and multiple blunt trauma to the head.

Detectives retrieved CCTV showing Ms Meshaka leaving the communal entrance of the block at 7.50pm on 17 September to get a parking permit from a friend’s car. She returned alone a few minutes later.

At 8.25pm that same evening, Aristakesyan arrived at Haven Green Court. He had also attended earlier that evening at approximately 5:40pm in what the prosecution said was a failed attempt to carry out his crime because the building workers had still been present.

On this later occasion he was seen to be in possession of a small man bag on arrival, however when he left at 9:21pm he was pictured carrying a bigger ‘bag for life’-type carrier bag in which it is suspected he carried the stolen cash and murder weapon.


Phone enquiries established that Aristakesyan had communicated with his brother through brief calls and texts whilst inside the address. In one such call which was recorded and played in evidence to the court he can be heard saying: “Come, there is much”.

During interview Aristakesyan accepted that he had been to visit Ms Meshaka that night but told police that he had left her alive and following his visit to her he had gone with his brother to a relative’s home before going on to meet another man in Victoria, supposedly for a discussion about buying a care home business. He claimed the bag he is seen carrying on CCTV contained items Ms Meshaka had given him to take to a charity shop.

Haven Green Court - Picture: Google Streetview

It is accepted that Arisakesyan’s brother facilitated his leaving from near to the scene and his transport to Victoria for the meeting in which the prosecution say, he handed over the stolen cash.

Arisakesyan’s brother was originally arrested and charged with assisting an offender however the case against him was later discontinued by the CPS.

Detective Superintendent Helen Rance, from the Specialist Crime Command, said, “Serafima was going about her life as normal on the evening she died. She had run some small errands and prepared herself a dinner when Aristakesyan called at her address for the second time that day. Having known him for around three years she had no reason to suspect that she was in danger.

“However in the brief course of his visit he succeeded in his calculated pre- planned course of events to steal a substantial amount of cash from her in order to bail himself out of his financial worries.

“Serafima was no threat at all to Aristakesyan but he betrayed her confidence and attacked her in her own home, her safe space, in the most cowardly way. Her family remain devastated and are still coming to terms with her untimely loss.”

A victim impact statement from Serafima's former husband said, "Nothing will bring my wife back, no sentence this man can get for this horrific crime would ever be enough. She was a wonderful person whom will forever be greatly missed."

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14 October 2019

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