David Hunter: Neighbour tells murder trial woman's health was deteriorating before death

Janice and David Hunter had retired to Cyprus from Northumberland. Credit: Family

A neighbour of a woman who was killed by her husband in Cyprus has told a court that her health was deteriorating and she was depressed.

David Hunter, 75, is standing trial accused of murdering his wife Janice in December 2021.

Mrs Hunter, 74, who had blood cancer, was suffocated by her husband, a former miner from Ashington, in Northumberland, at their home.

Mr Hunter claims he ended her life to stop her suffering and she had begged him to help her die.

Helmut Kesting, who lived on the same street as Mr and Mrs Hunter in Paphos, has been giving evidence before the court.

On the final day of evidence Mr Helmut told the court Mr Hunter was a very quiet and reasonable man and said he was very proud of his marriage, showing him and his wife photos and telling them how loving Mrs Hunter was.

He said Mrs Hunter was always with him when they met.

Asked to describe the Hunter's relationship he said: "Very very good relationship, my wife was sometimes a bit jealous because of the way he trusted her, she said I should treat her like that too. They did everything together.

"She was also very proud - once they invited us to their home and showed us many photos of the past together, their trips together. I never heard any shouting, never any fighting. It was full of harmony in their relationship."

Janice and David Hunter on their wedding day.

Mr Helmut said they had often returned from medical examinations when he saw the couple and Mrs Hunters health started deteriorating in 2020.

He said: "She became more and more depressed, the last three to four months we had no contact, because she didn’t want to talk."

Asked if Mr Hunter would complain about looking after his wife he replied: "No, Janice often told us that her greatest wish was not to be taken to hospital and Davidmade this possible.

"So that she could stay at home, he would get the medicine - let's not forget this was during Covid - and he often told us that they had difficulties to get the right medicine. This wasn’t about the hospital but due to Covid and restrictions.

"What I want to say is that looking after Janice was a very demanding job and he did very well."

Paphos District Court also heard from Janice Hunter's hairdresser Anna Isaia who told the court she went to see her every two weeks and last saw her a few days before she died in December 2021.

Janice Hunter had seen her hairdresser a few days before her death. Credit: Family

Asked what Mrs Hunter told her about her health, Ms Isaia said: "Different things, she was sick with leukaemia, about the therapies she did. I don’t remember details, she hurt a lot, she couldn’t sleep, she understood she didn’t have much time left.

"Last time she came she was very sad, she cried."

She described David Hunter as being very polite and said he loved his wife very much and was very affectionate with her.

Ms Isasia was asked by the prosecution if Mrs Hunter had told her that she did not want to live. She said: "From what I remember, no."

The evidence has now concluded and the prosecution and defence will submit their closing arguments on 22 June.

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