Charlotte Murray: Police prepare quarry for body search

image captionCharlotte Murray was 34 when she was reported missing

Police are to begin carrying out a new search for disappeared Omagh woman Charlotte Murray.

Her ex-fiancé Johnny Miller was found guilty of her murder by a jury earlier in October.

Charlotte Murray was killed some time between 31 October and 1 November 2012, but her body has never been found.

On Monday, police investigating her disappearance moved diggers in to clear an area in Benburb, County Tyrone, so that a flooded quarry can be drained.

"This step is being taken so that the floor of the quarry can be effectively searched," said Det Ch Insp Eamonn Corrigan.

"This has been an area of significant interest throughout my investigation."

The searches follow a review of information from the police investigation and the murder trial, added Mr Corrigan.

He said Charlotte's family "deserve to be able to say their goodbyes" and lay her to rest.

'We still don't have Charlotte back'

After Miller was found guilty, Charlotte's identical twin sister Denise appealed for him to tell the family where he had hidden her body.

"We still don't have Charlotte back," she said.


"We are now appealing to Mr Miller to do the decent thing, the honourable thing and let us know where Charlotte is so we can bring her home."

The family's call was echoed by the police.

The 48-year-old chef had been engaged to Ms Murray and was the last person to see her alive.

Miller, from Redford Park in Dungannon, shook his head as the judge told him he was sentencing him to life in prison.

media caption"Do the decent thing"

A further hearing will take place next month to set a minimum term.

Members of Ms Murray's family, including her mother and twin sister, who had been in court throughout the trial, cried and hugged each other.

Miller had insisted throughout the four-week trial at Dungannon Crown Court that he did not kill Ms Murray and he did not believe she was dead.

'Murderous rage'

However, the prosecution said the strands of circumstantial evidence pointed to Ms Murray being dead and that Miller had murdered her.

image captionJohnny Miller has been told he will serve a life sentence

The lawyer alleged Miller had done so in a "murderous rage" because he had been "lied to, betrayed and cuckolded" and on the morning of her disappearance she had emailed him explicit images of her with his friend.

He had searched the internet for pawn shops to sell their engagement ring, however this was shown to have been several minutes before he had received the explicit images.

Miller's evidence she had left to start a new life in Belfast had been described as "riddled with inconsistencies, inaccuracies and downright lies".

His attempts to "lay a false trail" that Ms Murray was alive had been exposed, according to the prosecution, by mobile telephone and computer data.

The prosecution said this had revealed Mr Miller had used Ms Murray's phone to send text messages during the two weeks after her disappearance and he had posted a message on her Facebook account saying she had to leave.

The data showed Ms Murray's phone had connected to mobile phone cell sites covering the area of Roxborough Heights in Moy - where the couple lived - and had never travelled to Belfast after the time she went missing.