An evil fantasist who murdered a teenage babysitter he targeted in a "malicious web of dececption" is facing jail.
Tony Bushby, 19, stabbed Catherine Wynter 23 times and left her lying in a pool of blood as she babysat in Beech Drive, Borehamwood, on Boxing Day last year.
He was found guilty at St Albans Crown Court today and he will be sentenced by Judge Andrew Bright QC tomorrow.
The judge must pass a life sentence on Bushby, but he will also set a tariff for the years he must remain in prison for, before he can even be considered for parole.
Judge Bright said the starting point for such a term is 25-years.
Pathologist Dr Nat Carey said the immediate cause of death was a severe wound to the neck that penetrated both her jugular veins and a stab wound to the stomach that penetrated her vital organs.
Some of the 23 stab wounds found on her body were defensive injuries that 19-year-old Katy suffered as she tried to protect herself.
The murder weapon was never found.
Three days earlier Bushby, who had met the art student at West Herts College in Watford, had lured her to a field on the outskirts of the town claiming they were to meet one of his fictional
friends called Cyn Darwin.
When nobody turned up Katy and Bushby left.
Opening the case to the jury, prosecutor Michael Speak said: "Katy would be contacted by the fictitious characters and, believing them to be real, she would talk to them on Facebook. In reality she
was caught in a web of malicious deception created and controlled by this defendant for purposes of his own."
Computer experts discovered that all four Facebook names - Cyn Darwin, Dan Tress, Shane Pleuon and Krystal Stanguard - had been created Bushby's IP address.
A friend of Katy's, Kien Minh Voong told the jury she had fallen in love with Bushby, who she met whilst studying at West Herts College. She would travel to a clearing in a wood to meet him,
where they would “just talk and kiss”.
Bushby, who was working at the Holiday Inn in Borehamwood, claimed that Katy's blood was found on his own front door because he had been given a pair of bloodied gloves by a man called Dan
Tress on the night of the killing.
He said he had been sitting in a car with Tress and he had given him the gloves because his hands were cold.
But, Tress was another of his fictional Facebook puppets.
Bushby used the character Pleuon to tell Katy over Facebook that Bushby "sorts people out" and that he had a sexual relationship with Cyn.
He told her that Borehamwood was a "forbidden zone for me and the gang." That, said the prosecutor, allowed Bushby to explain to Katy where she never saw his friends.
After Katy was murdered, Bushby repeatedly looked at her Facebook account for the next hour, and made inquiries to Facebook about removing an account.
Bushby damaged his mobile phone in an attempt to prevent contact between him and Katy being uncovered.
He disposed of blood-stained clothes and shoes in a bulky bin bag which he was seen on CCTV carrying through Borehamwood.
He left the bag by bins that were collected in Aycliffe Road that morning. They and the murder weapon were never recovered.
Bushby of Digswell Close, Borehamwood denied murder but was convicted unanimously by the jury.
Mr Speak said: "We will probably never know precisely why he murdered Katy. We will probably never know how far in advance he intended to kill her.”