Man jailed for strangling lover

John Mearns Credit: Cambridgeshire Police

A man who strangled his lover because she told him she wanted to go back to her husband will serve a minimum of 14 years behind bars.

John Mearns, who's 54 and of no fixed abode, was found guilty of murdering Pauline Smith at her home in St Ives in Cambridgeshire. The mother of two was found dead in October. Mearns was jailed for life today following a two week trial at Cambridge Crown Court.

DCI George Barr said: "Mearns has taken a mother from her children and this is something they and their family will have to live with for the rest of their lives.

"He has tried to lie from the outset, inflicting stab wounds on himself and setting up a scenario to back-up his stories.

"Not content with the suffering he has caused he has then put Pauline's family through the added agony of a trial and I hope that today's verdict brings them some comfort knowing that justice has been done."