Teen's 'smirking selfie' hours after murdering man met on dating app

A teenager grinned in a selfie while flipping his middle finger after he brutally murdered a man he met on Grindr, a UK court found.

Ben Bamford, 18, tried to explain the gruesome scene in an East Sussex cottage as the result of self-defence when Paul Jeffries, 52, refused to stop having sex with him.

However, jurors said the teenager murdered the man to settle drug debts before posing for a grinning selfie in a hospital shortly afterwards.

Bamford's grinning selfie hours after the murder. Image: PA

Bamford was swiftly convicted by a jury, which had been presented with, among other evidence, the photo of a bloodied Bamford flipping a middle finger from a hospital bed shortly after the killing.

Crime scene photos showed bloodied knives and stains throughout Mr Jeffries’s Mayfield cottage.

Paul Jeffries, 52, had his throat slashed by Bamford in a murder driven by the teenager's need to repay growing drug debts. Photo: PA

The victim had been stabbed 40 times and left for dead, his throat slashed by one of three knives wielding by Bamford in February.

A candlestick was also used as a weapon, before the murderer abandoned his victim’s naked body in the blood-soaked unit.

Ben Bamford was convicted by a UK jury. Photo: AAP

Bamford then took his victim’s Audi TT, drove to the Eastbourne District General Hospital and told medical staff he had self-harmed.

A grinning selfie with a raised middle finger was taken shortly afterwards.


The court heard Bamford had intended to rob Mr Jeffries in an attempt to pay back £400 (A$671) in drug debts.

A day before Mr Jefferies death, the then 17-year-old Bamford had received a series of text messages from his drug dealer demanding payment.

According to Bamford, the pair had met on Grindr but the meeting turned sour when Bamford asked Mr Jefferies to stop having sex with him. He told the court the tax accountant had refused.

Blood at the crime scene. Photo: PA

The teenage killer then said he went downstairs to escape but realised he was locked in, and his belongings were still upstairs with Mr Jeffries.

He said he took a knife as protection because he was scared.

Crime scene photos showed bloodied knives and stains throughout Mr Jeffries’s cottage. Photo: PA

However, the jury quickly dismissed his version of events, siding with prosecutors who insisted Bamford had always intended to rob Mr Jeffries.

The court heard Bamford had admitted to his mother after returning from hospital that he had attacked a man in his home.

Paul Jeffries was left to die naked in a pool of his own blood in his cottage after a savage attack by Ben Bamford. Photo: AAP

“This was a horrific attack by a teenage boy who preyed on his victim with the aim of exploiting him for money,” Detective Superintendent Adam Hibbert said.

“The level of violence he inflicted on Paul Jefferies was extreme and then he himself fled from the scene in the victim’s own car.

“He showed no remorse and indeed is smirking for a selfie photo taken an hour or so later.”

Bamford was due to be sentenced later in the week.