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The husband of a British woman murdered in Greece has spoken publicly for the first time after he allegedly confessed to being her killer.
A Greek TV station said it spoke to Charalambos (Babis) Anagnostopoulos, who is charged with premeditated murder in the death of Caroline Crouch, 20.
ANT1 said Anagnostopoulos wanted to apologise to Ms Crouch's family, telling a reporter "I deserve my punishment" and he "hid the truth" because he feared going to prison and being unable to raise his daughter.
The 33-year-old helicopter pilot initially told detectives that Ms Crouch, a university student, was strangled to death by burglars who ransacked their home on the morning of May 11.
Charalambos (Babis) Anagnostopoulos is charged with premeditated murder in the death of his wife Caroline Crouch
But police said he confessed on Thursday to smothering her with a pillow in front of their 11-month-old daughter after she told him that she wanted a divorce and for him to leave their house in suburban Athens.
The ANT1 TV station said it spoke to Anagnostopoulos on Saturday, and he wanted to apologise to Ms Crouch's British father David Crouch and Filipina mother Susan Dela Cuesta.
He said: "Sorry is a small word. I'm devastated… I only cared about my daughter. I hid the truth so I would be able to raise her.
"I deserve my punishment."
Anagnostopoulos said he refused to be examined by a psychiatrist because "I am fully aware of what happened".
Anagnostopoulos wore a bullet-proof vest when he was taken to a prosecutor's office on Friday
(Image: ALEXNDROS VLACHOS/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)
A court will now decide who gets custody of the couple's daughter – Ms Crouch's parents or Anagnostopoulos' parents.
The toddler remains in the care of Anagnostopoulos' parents.
He said: "I want one more thing. Our child, Lydia, to go to either my family or my other family. Lydia is my whole life.
"The rows I had with Caroline only concerned our child."
Police said Anagnostopoulos confessed to smothering Ms Crouch with a pillow on their bed following an argument.
He allegedly told police he considered hiding of his wife's body before settling on a story about a robbery, and he killed the family's pet husky in a bid to strengthen the cover up, Protothema reported.
Anagnostopoulos is said to have told detectives: "That night we were fighting early. At one point she threw the child in the crib and told me to leave the house.
"She pushed me and punched me. I lost my temper, I suffocated her with the pillow. Τhen I made up the robbery.
"I tied myself up. I did everything because when I realised I killed her, I thought of my child.
"I never wanted to lie. I did what I did to evade arrest; to protect my daughter.
Anagnostopoulos hugged Ms Crouch's devastated mother at a memorial service on Wednesday
"I thought of disappearing the body, but it was impossible for me to do so. Just looking at her, I cried.
"The next thing I thought was to say that someone else did it. I would tell the police that robbers entered the house. I was in a panic.
"I did not know what to do. I thought that in order to look more plausible and to believe that rogue robbers had entered, I would have to hurt the dog.
"No one would have thought that I could harm a dog. With heartache I hung the dog leash on the railings of the stairs."
The husband then reportedly told how he put his daughter next to Ms Crouch's body, and tried to make it look like burglars had tied him up and placed duct tape over his eyes and mouth.
Ms Crouch moved to Greece with her family when she was eight-years-old
He allegedly said: "Before tying myself, I took (my daughter) from the sofa where she was sleeping and put her on the bed next to Caroline."
Anagnostopoulos, a helicopter pilot, initially claimed to detectives in May that university student Ms Crouch was strangled by a foreign gang of intruders while he was tied up in another room.
But police suspected him from the beginning and played along as they gathered evidence, sources told Greek media.
Anagnostopoulos was attending a memorial service to his wife on the island of Alonnisos, where she grew up, when he was approached by police and taken back to Athens for questioning.
He was seen hugging his grief-stricken mother-in-law and left shortly afterwards with officers, who told him they wanted him to come back to Athens with them to discuss a breakthrough and new suspect in the case.
Ms Crouch and husband Anagnostopoulos on their wedding day in Portugal in 2019
But Anagnostopoulos was soon told that he was the suspect, and he confessed during an eight-hour interrogation, said police.
Detectives said the robbery story fell apart thanks to Ms Crouch's fitness tracker, data from Anagnostopoulos' mobile phone, and CCTV from the home in the upscale neighbourhood, Greek media reported.
Footage taken at 12.35am allegedly shows the Anagnostopoulos cradling his daughter on a sofa as he and Ms Crouch argued over text, Protothema reported.
Police say Anagnostopoulos removed the memory card from the security camera in the living room at 1.20am, and admitted to breaking it in half and flushing it down the toilet.
The husband and wife continued to text each other until about 3.15am.
Helicopter pilot Anagnostopoulos, 33, faces life in prison if convicted
(Image: Babis Anagnostopoulos/Instagram)
According to a coroner's report obtained by the Amna news agency, she went to bed and was asleep for about six minutes until the murder began.
A fitness tracker on Ms Crouch's wrist indicated "a sleeping person" at 3.58am.
But a sharp increase in her heart rate was detected between 4.05am and 4.11am, as she was killed, according to the coroner's report.
Her heart stopped beating at about 4.11am.
The report gave the cause of death as suffocation, and said Ms Crouch also suffered a neck injury which may have been caused by a sharp object.
It is alleged that data from Anagnostopoulos phone showed him moving between the ground floor and attic of the home at a time when he claimed he was tied up.
It is alleged that after killing his wife, he strangled the dog and staged the robbery scene – tying his wife to the bed and making it look like he had been bound and blindfolded by the burglars.
A neighbour told Protothema they heard the dog "crying" at about 4.20am.
Anagnostopoulos had told police the intruders broke in at about 6am.