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Monday, 8 July, 2002, 20:17 GMT 21:17 UK
Ex-soldier 'stabbed partner 40 times'
Court graphic
A former Army gunner, who believed he was suffering from Gulf War Syndrome, stabbed his estranged partner up to 40 times, a court has heard.

Paul Delaney, 30, killed Colleen Chudley and then washed his hands, telephoned the police and drove off in her car, a jury at Exeter Crown Court was told.

The ex-soldier used three knives to stab her and used such force that some stab wounds passed through her body, prosecutor James Tabor QC said.

Mr Delaney, who was living in Plymouth at the time of the killing, denies murdering Ms Chudley at her home in Park Close, Silverton on 16 January last year.


He thought he had Gulf War Syndrome, which may or may not exist

James Tabor QC, prosecutor

After the killing, Mr Delaney covered Ms Chudley's body and left their two young children upstairs, said Mr Tabor.

Martin Meeke, defending, told the jury that at the time of the killing, Mr Delaney was not in his right mind.

He said Mr Delaney accepted he was guilty of manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility.

Mr Tabor said the jury had to decide whether the defence could establish that at the time of the killings, Mr Delaney's responsibility for his actions was diminished.

Paul Delaney
Paul Delaney telephoned police after the stabbing

Mr Delaney joined the Royal Artillery at the age of 17 and took part in the Gulf War, although he never came under fire.

Mr Tabor said after his return from the conflict his behaviour "deteriorated rapidly" and he was dishonourably discharged after four years in the Army.

He met Ms Chudley shortly after his return, their daughter, Terri-Lee was born in 1993 and their son Harrison three years later.

Post-traumatic stress However, Mr Delaney's behaviour became worse during the relationship, he drank heavily and he told of suffering mood swings.

"He thought he had Gulf War Syndrome, which may or may not exist," Mr Tabor told the jury.

The court heard the couple separated in May 2000 and Mr Delaney went to a psychiatrist in the course of seeking a pension for Gulf War service.

He was diagnosed as having post-traumatic stress disorder, said Mr Tabor.

The trial continues.


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08 Feb 02 | Health
31 Aug 01 | Health
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