South West Wales

Trial hope on Ben and Catherine Mullany Antigua murders

Ben and Catherine Mullany
Image caption Ben and Catherine Mullany were shot in their hotel chalet two weeks after their wedding

The families of a couple killed on their Caribbean honeymoon hope to find out later when the trial of two men accused of their murders will start.

Ben and Catherine Mullany, both 31, were shot in their hotel chalet in Antigua almost three years ago.

Avie Howell and Kaniel Martin were charged with killing the couple in 2008, as well as three other murders.

A judge is due to indicate when a trial over the death of the Mullanys, from Pontardawe near Swansea, will start.

It had been scheduled to commence this week but the legal team representing the two defendants want their clients to face the five murder charges separately.

At a previous hearing Judge Mr Justice Richard Floyd said the court would make a decision how the trial would proceed on 23 May.

They are also accused of killing mechanic Tony Louisa, 43, student Rafique Kareem Harris, 24, and Woneta Anderson Walker, a 43-year-old shopkeeper.

The uncertainty has meant Mr and Mrs Mullany's families have been unable to book flights or accommodation to Antigua in order to sit in on the trial.

Mr Mullany's uncle Michael Meredith, 58, described the past three years as extremely difficult.

He said: "We are still no clearer when the people accused of murdering Ben and Cath will stand trial.

"In the families' eyes this has been too long to wait."

The couple died after being shot early on 27 July, 2008 in their chalet at the five-star Cocos Hotel.

Mrs Mullany, a doctor, died instantly, while her husband, who was studying physiotherapy at the University of the West England in Bristol, was placed on a life-support machine.

He was flown back to Morriston Hospital in Swansea but died a week later.

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