Husband guilty of murdering his wife

02/04/2013

A husband whose wife disappeared from their family home in Herefordshire last year has today been found guilty at Worcester Crown Court of her murder.

61-year-old John Taylor's wife, Alethea Taylor, was last seen alive on 17 January 2012 and since then there has been no trace or sightings of her.

The defendant reported his wife missing to the police who immediately launched an investigation to locate her. To date, her body has never been found and he refuses to divulge what he has done with it.

David Elliott, Sector Crown Prosecutor from West Midlands Crown Prosecution Service, said:

"Throughout this prosecution, John Taylor has spun a web of lies in order to avoid justice, however, a jury today has seen through his deceit and they have found him guilty of murdering his wife.

"The defendant reported his wife missing from their family home and he claimed to the police that she was suffering from dementia and had a habit of wandering off in a confused state. This was a blatant lie designed explain away her disappearance. 

"As the police began a search for Mrs Taylor, they began to arrive at the conclusion that she had not just wandered off, but that there was some form of foul play involved in her disappearance.

"Taylor was unhappy in his marriage and he was having an affair. His wife found out and in a diary which was recovered from the house, Mrs Taylor highlighted her concerns at her husband's infidelity and the future of their marriage.

"Scientific investigation from the family home and the defendant's car provided the police with the vital evidence of Mrs Taylor's blood, which Taylor tried to explain was due to his wife's regular nosebleeds. He even claimed to have tried to contact his wife by telephone several times when she disappeared. Cell site analysis showed that he had only called her only once, a call which lasted eight seconds.

"John Taylor is a deceitful man and today he has been found guilty of murdering his wife. We will never know how Mrs Taylor was killed or where her body has been concealed. Only the defendant has the knowledge and answers to these questions. We would encourage him to inform the authorities of where he has hidden the body so that Mrs Taylor can be finally laid to rest and her family and friends can get some form of closure in this tragic case."