Levi Bellfield was lying when he admitted murder of Elizabeth Chau, police say

Serial killer Levi Bellfield was lying when he made repeated sworn confessions to the murder of a computer studies student 24 years ago, detectives have said.

The 55-year-old triple murderer claimed earlier this year that he killed, kidnapped and buried Elizabeth Chau, who went missing in 1999.

The decision means Metropolitan Police officers will not dig up the west London site where the killer said he buried her.

Ms Chau’s family told The Guardian newspaper they are disappointed with the decision and still want the dig to go ahead.

The Met first interviewed Bellfield in jail in May but that interview was thought not to be thorough enough, the newspaper said.

The force carried out a second interview over two days at high-security HMP Frankland in Durham earlier this month, it was reported.

A force spokesperson said: “Specialist detectives have taken these disclosures very seriously and examined all information made available to them.

“It’s right that a considerable amount of time and police resources have been dedicated to this investigation as we hoped to find Elizabeth and provide much-needed answers for her family.

My Sister Milly
Bellfield was found guilty of the murder of Milly Dowler, who went missing in 2002 (Surrey Police/PA)

“All relevant lines of inquiry have now been exhausted and the decision has been taken to close this investigation.

“As a result of these inquiries, a number of inconsistencies and discrepancies have been uncovered which lead us to believe the confession is false and this individual is not connected to Elizabeth’s disappearance.

“We have remained in close contact with Elizabeth’s family throughout this investigation and recently met with them, explaining how we have come to this outcome.

“This has understandably been a very difficult time for them and we would ask that the privacy of the family is respected. Our thoughts remain with Elizabeth’s loved ones.”

Bellfield is serving two whole life terms for three murders and one attempted murder.

In 2008 he was jailed for life for the murders of Marsha McDonnell, 19, in 2003; and Amelie Delagrange, 22; as well as trying to murder Kate Sheedy, 18, in 2004. All three victims were attacked in west London.

He was already serving his sentence when he went on trial for killing schoolgirl Milly Dowler, who was snatched from the street walking home from school in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, in March 2002.

Bellfield was found guilty of abducting and killing the 13-year-old following a trial at the Old Bailey in 2011.

If he had killed Ms Chau she would have been his first known victim.