'Dangerous individual who poses threat to women' - police welcome murder conviction

The remains of Leah Ware, inset, has still not been found <i>(Image: Sussex News and Pictures/Sussex Police)</i>
The remains of Leah Ware, inset, has still not been found (Image: Sussex News and Pictures/Sussex Police)

A double murderer has been described by police as "an exceptionally dangerous individual who poses a significant threat to women".

A jury of 10 men and two women took 10-and-a-half hours to convict Mark Brown of both murder charges.

They decided Brown killed two women and torched their bodies in an oil drum at Little Bridge Farm near Hastings.

Only charred teeth and bone fragments remained of single mum-of-two Alex Morgan, 34.

No trace of mum-of-three Leah Ware, 33, has ever been found.

Brown killed Leah Ware in May and Alexandra Morgan at a remote farm near St Leonards in East Sussex in November last year after meeting them through a sex work website, a jury at Hove Crown Court was told.

"Alex Morgan was a young woman dedicated to her two young children. She had everything to live for but tragically, her efforts to earn money to support her family caused Alex to come into contact with Mark Brown," said Detective Chief Inspector Neil Kimber, of the Kent and Essex serious crime directorate.

"Brown is an exceptionally dangerous individual who poses a significant threat to women.

"I am extremely pleased he has been convicted of Alex’s murder and, once he has been sentenced, I hope Alex’s family and friends can find some form of closure to come to terms with her tragic loss."

Brown put Ms Morgan head-first into a home-made incinerator before dumping her remains.

The body of Ms Ware has never been found, but the prosecution believe he used a similar method – as well as also killing her Pomeranian dog, Lady.

Detective Superintendent Andy Wolstenholme, of the Surrey and Sussex major crime team, said: "No-body homicides are incredibly rare and difficult to prove but thanks to an enormous amount of investigative work and close liaison with our colleagues in Kent Police and the Crown Prosecution Service, we were able to build a really strong case that showed Mark Brown to be responsible for Leah’s death.

"Leah was a loving and trusting young woman, but sadly her later life wasn’t without its difficulties.

"She became dependent on Mark Brown and he used that to his advantage until ultimately, it led to her death.

"He may never tell us how or why he killed her but we hope his conviction for her murder will bring some sense of justice to the family and friends Leah left behind."

Brown pleaded not guilty to both murders but following the seven-week trial at Hove Crown Court he was convicted by a unanimous jury.

He is due to be sentenced at the same court on Friday January 13, 2023.