North East Wales

Glynis Solmaz killing: Alexandros Wetherill guilty of murder

Glynis Solmaz
Image caption Glynis Solmaz was found dead with injuries to her neck and face

A former boxer has been found guilty of murdering a Wrexham pensioner during a burglary at her home.

Alexandros Wetherill, 24, of Wrexham, was convicted of the murder of Glynis Solmaz, 65, by a majority verdict after a retrial at Mold Crown Court.

The prosecution said the starting point for sentence was 30 years in jail, and Wetherill will be sentenced on Friday.

Wetherill admitted manslaughter but denied murder. Another man, Christopher Curran, was earlier cleared of murder.

The court heard Ms Solmaz put up a fight when Wetherill burgled her home, believing she had £40,000 in cash in a bedroom safe.

He choked her in her bedroom on the Caia Park Estate in February.

Wetherill and Christopher Curran, 34, denied murder at a trial last month.

Curran was cleared but the jury could not agree in Wetherill's case.

Wetherill showed no emotion but stood with his head bowed and shook his head when the foreman returned the verdict on Thursday.

Judge Mr Justice Royce remanded him in custody until Friday for sentencing.

Prosecutor Simon Medland QC told the judge a murder in such circumstances had a starting point of 30 years in jail.

Earlier he told the jury: "She paid with her life and was left crumpled on the bedroom floor, injured and dying first, then finally dead."

Wetherill gripped her and marched her about the house, and claimed that as she hit him on the head with a bedside lamp, he tightened his grip on her.

He claimed he did not intend to hurt her and did not know she was dying.

Wetherill and Curran, along with Ms Solmaz's former son-in-law Christopher Natt, 52, and David Lovell, 29 - both of Wrexham - pleaded guilty to conspiring to burgle her home.

Prosecutor Mr Medland had told the trial: "She needed to be dealt with. They needed to ensure that she would not be able to give evidence against them.

"The price she paid for being in her home on that night was her life."

A post mortem examination by Home Office pathologist Dr Jonathan Medcalf revealed her injuries were consistent with "significant and prolonged" pressure to the neck.

The prosecution said that had been done by Wetherill to subdue her, while Curran tried to remove the safe.

That was eventually done by Wetherill, but he had to get a lift from the burglary scene by Lovell, because Curran had left in his vehicle.

The court heard there was about £10,000 and some jewellery in the safe.