British pensioner, 75, is escorted from Cyprus court as his sentencing for killing his terminally ill wife ‘who begged him to help her die’ is adjourned
- David Hunter, 75, was due to be sentenced today for killing wife Janice last year
- He was initially charged with murder but has pleaded guilty to lesser charge of manslaughter after court heard terminally-ill Janice had ‘begged’ him to kill her
- Mr Hunter hopes to avoid jail but will have to wait until Dec 13 for a new hearing
A British pensioner who was due to learn his fate today for killing his terminally ill wife has been pictured emerging from court after the sentencing was postponed.
David Hunter, 75, was charged with murdering 74-year-old wife Janice at their retirement home in the town of Paphos in December last year, but has struck a deal to plead guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter in the hopes of being spared jail.
It comes after Mr Hunter’s daughter told a Cyprus court that her mother ‘begged him for a long time (to assist her death) and was very clear about what she wanted.’
Mr Hunter was due to learn his fate today but a judge at Paphos Assize Court adjourned the case until December 13, with the reason not immediately clear.
David Hunter is pictured emerging from court in Paphos, Cyprus, today after a court hearing to determine his sentence for killing his wife was postponed
Mr Hunter was initially charged with murdering wife Janice (right) but has agreed to plead guilty to the lesser charge of manslaughter after a court heard she ‘begged’ him to kill her
Photographers captured a lean and weary-looking Mr Hunter being led from the court back to a waiting police van.
Justice Abroad, which works to help people navigate foreign justice systems, broke the news of the plea deal with Cypriot authorities last week.
The organisation said it is working with Cypriot lawyers Nicoletta Charalambidou and Ritsa Pekri to help Mr Hunter, a former miner from Northumberland.
Michael Polak, director of Justice Abroad, said: ‘We are very pleased that the murder charge is no longer on the table as our objective all along has been to get David out of prison and back home as soon as possible.
‘At the next hearing David’s strong mitigation, such as his good character and long and loving relationship with his wife, will be put before the court.
Mr Hunter’s daughter told a court in Cyprus that her terminally-ill mother (together on their wedding day) had asked him to end her life for ‘a long time’
‘We hope, given the particular facts of this case, and case law in similar cases from around the world, that the eventual sentence is one that the court could consider suspending.
‘We thank everyone from the United Kingdom, Cyprus, and around the world for their support of David and his family at this difficult time.’
Earlier this year, Mr Hunter’s daughter Lesley said her mother had ‘begged him for a long time (to assist her death) and was very clear about what she wanted’.
Justice Abroad said that Mrs Hunter had been suffering from terminal blood cancer.
The couple had moved to Cyprus from Ashington in Northumberland following their retirement in 2002.