herald

Sunday 19 August 2018

New bride fought for her life during honeymoon raid

ACCUSED: Suspects on resort murder charges

A newlywed shot dead on honeymoon in Antigua fought for her life before she was killed in a pair of white pyjamas embroidered with her married name, a court heard.

Catherine Mullany was gunned down alongside her husband Ben in their luxury beachside resort, little more than a fortnight after their wedding day.

She was later found by a doctor lying on the floor of their cottage in a "defensive" stance as if she had tried to fend off an attack, jurors were told.

She was bleeding extensively, her skin had turned a blue-grey colour and, when her body was moved, a bullet shell was discovered. Her nightwear had been embroidered with the words "Mrs Mullany".

Oritta Zacharia, a doctor working for the Caribbean nation's ministry of health, said the 31-year-old had "fresh" bruising.

"In my opinion, she appeared to have been in a fight before she would have died," she said.

The doctor told the court she arrived at the upmarket Cocos Hotel at around 6.40am on July 27, 2008. By the time she got to Mrs Mullany's body, "some rigor mortis" had set in.

"She was lying on her back, her arms and legs were somewhat over her body in a defensive stance," she told Antigua's High Court yesterday.

The Mullanys, from Swansea, south Wales, were on the final day of their honeymoon in the south west of the holiday isle when a gunman burst into their room at the Cocos Hotel.

Mrs Mullany, a doctor, died at the scene of what appeared to have been a botched robbery. Her husband, also 31, was critically injured and died a week later.

Avie Howell (20), of Golden Grove, Antigua, and Kaniel Martin (23), of Tindale Road, are on trial for their murders.

The trial, which began on Wednesday, is scheduled to last three to four weeks.

hnews@herald.ie

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