1. ITV Report

Son of ex-UKIP councillor who killed wife after affair describes ‘huge betrayal’


The son of a former UKIP councillor from Suffolk has spoken of the "huge betrayal" which ultimately led to his mother being killed by his father.

Ex-Royal Marine Stephen Searle, 64, murdered wife Anne Searle at their home in Stowmarket months after starting an affair with their son Gary's partner Anastasia Pomiateeva.

Despite the infidelity, Gary says he wants to rebuild his relationship with his girlfriend of nine years - but cannot forgive his father.

"I just couldn't believe the man I absolutely idolised and worshipped had done something like that to me. But me and Anastasia just love each other so much that if anything this has brought us closer together. If this doesn't break us we can overcome anything together."

– Gary Searle, speaking to the Daily Mirror

He added that he did not have a father any more for "obvious reasons".

A jury at Ipswich Crown Court heard the Searles' marriage had been under strain since she discovered her husband's affair in June 2017.

Speaking following the conviction, Ms Pomiateeva said she was shocked when Searle first approached her. She told the Mirror she felt "ashamed and guilty" when the truth came out and wants to now rebuild her relationship with Gary.

Stephen Searle was found guilty of murdering his wife Credit: Suffolk Police

Prosecutors said Searle "persisted in his efforts" to seduce Ms Pomiateevafor weeks and sent her photos of himself bodybuilding. The court heard the pair began a sexual relationship in April 2017, and this was kept hidden from the rest of the family, but the relationship was discovered three months later.

In a 999 call made on December 30 last year and played to jurors, Searle told police: "I've just killed my wife."

Officers attended their home within minutes of the call made at 10.19pm and found Mrs Searle dead. A post-mortem examination recorded that Mrs Searle died of compression of the neck.

Forensic pathologist Dr Benjamin Swift said Mrs Searle would have lost consciousness after about eight to 15 seconds of pressure being applied to her neck, and death required further sustained pressure for a period of minutes.

Stephen Searle will be sentenced today (Wednesday)

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