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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 May, 2005, 16:11 GMT 17:11 UK
Appeal husband jailed for murder
Garry Malone
Garry Malone made a televised appeal to help catch his wife's killer
A husband who made an emotional appeal for the return of his missing wife has been found guilty of her murder.

Garry Malone, 50, formerly of Potters Bar, Herts, was convicted of killing his wife Sharon, 28, a trainee teacher, in November 1999.

A court at the Old Bailey heard that Malone disposed of her body in a park before fleeing to Spain with his two young sons.

Malone claimed he left England due to fears about the safety of his children.

The court heard that Malone was in tears when he made an emotional television appeal at a press conference for the return of his wife following her disappearance.

"The boys are asking for mum," he said in a media conference a month after she disappeared from their home.

"Please contact the police or your dad and put our minds at rest," he added.

Sharon Malone
Sharon Malone's body was found in a dried-up stream

But Mrs Malone did not leave their Hertfordshire home alive on 28 November 1999, the Old Bailey heard.

Malone killed her and hid her body in a beauty spot at nearby North Mimms Park.

And within weeks of making the appeal, Malone disappeared to Spain with the couple's sons and began a new life under a different identity.

He left the country at the end of January 2000 with the boys, then aged two and four, fearing he was increasingly coming under suspicion.

Mrs Malone's body was discovered in a dried-up stream in March 2000. She had died from two blows to her head.

Extradited from Spain

She was dressed as if she was preparing to go to bed and may have died in the couple's bedroom, the court heard.

Malone, a karate instructor and guitar collector, refused to return to the UK for his wife's funeral.

He then laid a false trail for police in a series of letters in which he claimed he feared for his family's safety and said his wife owed money to "nasty men".

Malone was extradited to Britain last year and charged.

Malone with his sons, then aged two and four
Malone with his two young sons, who cannot be identified

Prosecutor Stephen John said the couple were divorcing and Mrs Malone was pushing for a 100,000 settlement at a time when Malone was in debt.

Mr John said it was not known what had led up to the killing but, following it, Malone had "acted in a cruel and calculating way" by dumping the body.

He was having an affair with Paula Fiddes, who had been Mrs Malone's school friend, and feared losing his sons after the divorce.

After marrying in 1993, the relationship began to break down, mainly due to Malone's poor work record, said Mr John.

Malone was found guilty by an 11-1 majority and remanded in custody until Thursday.

The jury is still considering verdicts on perverting the course of justice charges against Ms Fiddes, 34, a clerk, of Barnet, Herts, and Malone's son from a previous marriage, Gareth Malone, 24, a clerk, of Basildon, Essex.




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