Lord Baden-Powell's great-grandson charged with murder of wife
A GREAT-grandson of Lord Baden-Powell, the founder of the Scout movement, has been charged in Australia with the murder of his wife, Allison Baden-Clay, a former beauty queen whose body was found in a creek six weeks ago.
In a case that has gripped the nation, Gerard Baden-Clay, 40, a prominent real estate agent who lived with his 43-year-old wife and three young daughters in an upmarket Brisbane suburb, was charged on Wednesday after being questioned for several hours by police.
During the weeks after the disappearance of Mrs Baden-Clay on April 20, it emerged that her husband had an affair with a saleswoman who worked in his office.
The woman, Toni McHugh, reportedly resigned last year after Mr Baden-Clay told staff in his office that his wife had learnt of the affair.
Family friends knew about the pair's marital troubles and believed the affair ended last year, but police have confirmed that the relationship continued.
Though Mr Baden-Clay refused to give interviews, he was approached by a television crew a week after his wife's disappearance and appeared anxious and overwrought. His wife's body had not yet been found.
"We just hope that she will come home soon," he said.
"I'm trying to look after my children at the moment, I've got three young girls, and we really trust that the police are doing everything they can to find my wife ... I have had no contact from her at all. I've tried to help the police as much as I can, we all have, with everything we've got."
He told police that his wife went for a walk at 10.30pm on April 19 and that he reported her missing the following morning when he discovered that she had not returned. Her body was found almost two weeks later after a massive police hunt, under a bridge about six miles away.
Mr Baden-Clay, a former accountant who worked in London and Switzerland, was an active member of the local scouting community and made reference to his famous ancestor on his real estate agent's website.
"[Gerard Baden Clay's] personal philosophies of ethical excellence and team loyalty, derived from his lineage as the great-grandson of international Scouts founder Baden Powell, have clearly found their perfect landing spot in the field of real estate," the website stated.
Mr Baden-Clay's lawyer, Darren Mahony, said on Wednesday that Mr Baden-Clay was devastated and will "defend the charge vigorously".