Wednesday 28 June 2017

Relations suspect Howell may have killed his father-in-law despite denial

John Bingham

DoublE murderer Colin Howell may also have killed his father-in-law, relations suspect.

New questions emerged about the Baptist dentist as his former lover Hazel Stewart was jailed for life for her role in the killings of Howell's first wife, Lesley (31) and Stewart's first husband, Trevor Buchanan (32).

Howell pleaded guilty to the murders in November last year.

Despite his confession, relations suspect Howell may yet be harbouring a final secret -- his possible role in the murder of his father-in-law, Henry Clarke.

Mr Clarke collapsed and died in the Howells's house from a suspected heart attack only 12 days before the double murder.

The deaths of his wife and father-in-law enabled Howell, who had been facing bankruptcy, to inherit £414,000 (€487,500) and begin a new life.

Police have questioned Howell about Mr Clarke's death, which he denies. But detectives could not exhume the body to check Mr Clarke's cause of death as he had been cremated at Howell's instigation.

Lesley Howell's brother, Dr Christopher Clarke, said: "I don't think my sister's murder was a crime of passion. I think he (Howell) may well have wanted to be with his new lover but I think this was logistically and financially motivated.

"My dad died very quickly while superficially healthy. I do wonder did Colin kill him -- I will never actually know, I'm suspicious."

Irish Independent

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