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Patricia Wilson case: Jean-Louis Cayrou 'capable of killing'

Patricia Wilson (right) with her mother Jean Image copyright Slater and Gordon/PA
Image caption Patricia Wilson (right, pictured with her mother Jean) had been living in a hamlet near the village of Vabre-Tizac when she disappeared

The ex-wife of a man accused of killing his British lover in rural France has told a court she believes he was capable of committing the crime.

Patricia Wilson, 58, formerly of Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, vanished from her home in August 2012. Her body has never been found.

Mrs Wilson had been living in a hamlet called Les Landes Basses near the village of Vabre-Tizac.

Jean-Louis Cayrou, 54, of La Salvetat-Peyrales, denies murdering her.

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The trial, being held in Rodez, near Toulouse, heard the pair had an affair after her partner returned to Britain for medical treatment.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Jean-Louis Cayrou is on trial at the Cour d'Assizes de L'Aveyron in Rodez

Sylvie Escaffre, 53, the former wife of Mr Cayrou, said he had become a violent, abusive husband.

She described one incident when she said he entered the bathroom while she was in the shower and tried to force himself on her, resulting in a struggle.

She said she was extremely scared of him.

After learning of Mrs Wilson's disappearance, she immediately believed Cayrou could have killed her, she told the Cour d'Assises de l'Aveyron.

The court heard the relationship between Mr Cayrou and Mrs Wilson had deteriorated by mid-July 2012 and that she confided in friends that they had had an argument when she tried to end it.

It was alleged by her friends that Mr Cayrou entered her house on 25 July, cut the electricity, attempted to suffocate her while she was sleeping.

Of Mrs Wilson's body, which has never been found, Mrs Escaffre said: "I thought to myself, if it is him, he would have been capable of burying it in my garden."

Her statement prompted sobs from the public bench where members of Cayrou's family - including some of his nine siblings - were sitting.

The hearing continues.

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