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Trial of British pensioner who allegedly killed his wife postponed

couple
Janice and David Hunter

The Paphos Criminal Court decided on Thursday to postpone the hearing of David Hunter on trial for the pre-meditated murder of his wife, following a request filed by his attorneys.

Hunter, 74, is facing a charge of pre-meditated murder, which his lawyers are trying to get reduced to manslaughter.

During the hearing scheduled for Thursday, defence lawyers Ritsa Pekri and Nicoletta Charalambidou requested to postpone until October 12 in order to have time to discuss with their client and the prosecution an amendment of the charge brought against him.

Last December, Hunter admitted to killing his wife Janice, 75, in their home in Tremithousa in Paphos.

The man admitted to killing his wife, who was suffering from leukaemia because he said he could not bear to see her suffer.

In his confession to the police, he said he suffocated the woman by blocking her mouth and nose with his hands while she was sitting in an armchair.

Pekri and Charalambidou also requested the trial be postponed on Thursday to allow Hunter to clarify details of his wife’s illness to them.

The prosecution did not file any objections to postponing the hearing, and the court decided to grant the defence their request, setting the date for October 12 at 9.30am.

Hunter had appeared in court on Monday for his first hearing, which had been postponed three times before.

Outside the court that day, Hunter, who also tried to take his own life and spent two weeks in intensive care, described life without his wife as “a black hole”.

Speaking to journalists outside the court, he said he wants the trial to take place so he knows where he stands.

“I used to think I could never imagine life without Janice but it’s just so much harder,” he said. “I just live day to day. I have to keep my chin up.

“Janice’s sister had died from leukaemia and she saw what was coming.  She made me promise her if she ever got it to help her. She said I don’t want to go through that. She knew the symptoms and saw them coming.”

Speaking to Sky News in June, Hunter’s daughter, Lesley Cawthorne, urged the judges to “show compassion” to her father.

“My dad is not a risk to society,” Cawthorne said. “He told me what happened and I have no reason to disbelieve him or to think anything other than the fact that he’s telling me the truth.

“My mum made her wishes clear and my dad helped her. She just wanted it to end. She didn’t want to fight. She didn’t want treatment or a long, protracted death. She’d had enough and she just wanted to go.”

 

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