A Stamford Hill pensioner was left gagged and bound to a chair by burglars for five weeks before her body was discovered, a court heard this week.
Two Polish men broke into 83-year-old Eveline Kelmenson's house through the basement in the middle of the night, before taping her to a chair, robbing her and ransacking her home, a jury at the Old Bailey was told.
Miss Kelmenson's decomposed body was found in her bedroom in Leweston Place on January 1 2009, after concerned relatives visited her home and called the police.
She had lived in the large property for more than 50 years with her nine siblings who had all since died.
Prosecuting, Jonathan Laidlaw QC said: "The defendants ransacked the house in their search for anything of value to steal. When they were done, the defendants left the house.
"Miss Kelmenson was left still bound and gagged on the floor of her bedroom. It was winter and it was cold and because she was alone in the house, she had no means of escape or alerting others to her plight. It must have been a terrifying experience."
Miss Kelmenson, who never married, died a "slow death" from hypothermia.
Kuba Dlugosz, 33, and Szymon Wyrostek, 26, deny manslaughter, robbery and burglary.
The trial continues.