001/Martins

Life imprisonment for man who murdered Liverpool solicitor

29/09/2011

Life for solicitor's murderer

A man who murdered a Liverpool solicitor before hiding her body for four days, has been sentenced to life imprisonment at Chester Crown Court.

Philip Martins, 48, is believed to have smothered or strangled Liverpool solicitor Linda Bakewell in her car after she had met him in Widnes and offered him a lift home.

Linda had been introduced to Martins by a mutual friend and had become 'besotted' with him.

However, the prosecution claim that he took advantage of her 'affection and her wallet' and showed her little regard, often ingnoring her and calling her names to others.

She was last seen with Martins in a Widnes pub at 01:30am on 20 November before moving to another bar where he carried on drinking.

Ms Bakewell, who was not drinking because she was driving, drove them both to an industrial estate on the outskirts of the town after asking him to show her where he worked.

Throughout the trial, Martins claimed he could not remember what happened.  The jury heard it may never be known how Linda died.

After killing her, Martins drove her car back to his house and dragged her body inside. He later drove her car to a car park in Penketh and disposed of the keys before returning home on foot.

He moved her corpse a number of times over the next few days, before taking her body out of his house to the boot of his car where police found her.

Ian Davies, acting head of the Complex Casework Unit in CPS Mersey-Cheshire, said: "Martins treated Linda Bakewell with the utmost disrespect, both in life and in death."

Martins was sentenced to life imprisonment and must serve a minimum term of 18 years.

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For more information contact Sharon King, Area Communications Manager, CPS Mersey-Cheshire, on 0151 239 6465.