A 28-year-old woman who entered into a sham marriage with a convicted conman took her own life after finding out she had been cheated, used and lied to, an inquest heard.

An inquest at Accrington Town Hall was told how Daniela Stepien, from Burnley, a successful businesswoman who worked for an accountancy firm, was found dead at the home she owned in Deerplay Close, by her father, Sebastian Alojzy Borzuchowski, on August 8 last year.

It was heard that in 2019 Daniela had divorced her then husband, before entering into a relationship with older man, Rezwan Javed, also known as Jonny or Raja Rez, who she knew through her ex.

Javed proposed to Daniela but she rebuffed his advances until he followed her to Poland in November 2019 where she was visiting family, and popped the question once more.

Deerplay Close

Deerplay Close

A statement from her close friend and work colleague, Nafeesa Kauser, said that Daniela's family had seemed to like Javed, or Jonny, as they called him, and the couple married in November that year.

However, Ms Kauser said there were things that did not add up about Jonny, and on the day of their wedding, which was supposed to take place in Burnley, they instead ended up at Jonny's relative's house in Manchester, where the ceremony was conducted by an Imam.

Ms Kauser's statement read: "My husband was supposed to come with me to the wedding but he refused to come, telling me he thought it was a sham marriage.

"Jonny's parents were also not present, which for an Islamic wedding I thought was strange. I was due to sign the register but Jonny would not let me write his name on the register, and wrote a different name to what we knew him as.

"After the wedding, him and Daniela went to a hotel and I stayed to chat with his friends and that's when I found out he lied about why his parents were not at the wedding.

"We later found out that Jonny still had a wife and was not divorced, and was still going to his other wife's house, splitting his time between Daniela's and there.

"We also found out he didn't have a real job and was just delivering things for his friend, who he called 'Pops'.

"Daniela went to confront his other wife, but no-one seemed bothered about what had happened."

Accrington Town Hall

Accrington Town Hall

The inquest was told how Daniela and Jonny then separated and she made plans to buy her own house in July 2020.

Ms Kauser's statement continued: "Jonny then got back in touch and she was told he had divorced his wife and he moved in with Daniela in July."

A short time after this things began to turn sour, with arguments taking place and at one point Daniela even reported Jonny had been violent towards her, before their relationship broke down.

However, texts and calls were continuously shared between Daniela and Jonny in the days leading up to her death, some of which had upset her so much that on August 8, hours before she was due to visit Ms Kauser, and after going shopping with her father in Burnley that morning, she phoned her friend and told her she 'couldn't live anymore and had tried to take her own life'.

Worried, Ms Kauser drove to Daniela's but when she arrived, there was an ambulance outside and her dad and sister, Samanta were there.

Daniela was taken to hospital but was pronounced dead around 5.20pm.

The police were called and following investigations and after speaking with 'Pops', Daniela's sister, Samanta Stepien, said they discovered Jonny had been weaving a web of lies.

She told the inquest: "He lied about the wedding, it was a sham. We found out he knew Pops from when they were in prison together, and Pops told us Jonny was a dodgy character; we have not seen him since before her death.

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"Daniela was very proud of herself, she was young but had managed to buy her own house, and she had a good job.

"She had no other problems in her life, apart from Jonny.

"She was upset when she split with her husband but when she met Jonny she was happy for a while. She didn't need financial support, she just wanted emotional support.

"We were very close, she would always tell me about things and I would try to support her but I think she was ashamed that she could not get away from him - he was violent towards her, and he stole her laptop and was trying to make her steal from work.

"He was involved with drugs and was growing cannabis in her house - she would never do anything like this herself, she didn't need to - she didn't take drugs and she had a good job, she would never have done anything to jeopardise that.

"She just couldn't somehow get away from him.

"He lied to everyone and was only after her money - she had a good heart and would help anyone."

Rezwan Javed in 2011

Rezwan Javed in 2011

Giving evidence, DI Paul Langley said although they were satisfied there was no third party involvement in Daniela's death, an investigation found that Jonny, or Rezwan Javed, was of a lot of interest to the police.

He said: "Mr Javed changed his name to Raja Rez when he was released from prison but also went under the pseudonym of Jonny.

"Him and his brother were convicted over a large scale insurance scam, which was one of the biggest in the UK, and under the proceeds of crime act he had to pay back £156,000.

"Following Daniela's death we tried to speak with Jonny but could not locate him. His father said he didn't know where he was and his brother was very hostile towards us.

"We put markers on him on the police national database, as we still would like to interview him about what happened, as we were unable to access Daniela's phone to read messages sent between them before her death, but so far he has not been located."

Coroner Mark Williams said: "There were no problems in Daniela's life until Jonny showed back up, which her family were not happy about and I can understand why and there were concerns raised during the investigation.

"Sadly we will never know what was said between them on August 7, but she took the decision to take her own life, and died at Royal Blackburn Hospital on August 8."

A medical cause of death of hanging was offered and Mr Williams recorded a conclusion of suicide.