Accused in Natsumi Kogawa murder trial pleads guilty to interfering with human remains

WATCH: A surprise development in court, as the man accused in the murder of Japanese student Natsumi Kogawa pleaded guilty to one of the two charges against him. Rumina Daya has the details.

In a stunning admission at the tail end of the Natsumi Kogawa murder trial, William Schneider pleaded guilty to interfering with human remains.

Schneider has pleaded not guilty to the charge of second-degree murder and the jury still needs to weigh the evidence on that charge.

Crown told the jury on Monday to use common sense and weigh the evidence as a whole, arguing that the Japanese student did not overdose or commit suicide while she was out on a date and Schneider intentionally killed her when he smothered her with his hands.

WATCH: Pathologist takes the stand in murder trial of Japanese student Natsumi Kogawa

Crown said Schneider confessed to killing Kogawa, told police where to find her body, and he tried to take his own life after what he did.

Defence said Schneider put the body in the suitcase but the jury could infer that after Kogawa died, he panicked and made poor decisions. Defence said a pathologist could not determine a cause of death and there was no DNA evidence linking Schneider to the death.

Defence went on to say there is no proof beyond a reasonable doubt that Schneider had the intent to commit murder.

Deliberations are expected to begin early this week.

Kogawa, 30, came to Vancouver to study English but she was reported missing in September 2016.

Her body was found a few weeks later at the Gabriola Mansion, a historic building in Vancouver’s west end.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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