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Last Updated: Monday, 28 November 2005, 17:26 GMT
'Selfish father' murdered ill son
Jacob Wragg
Doctors had said Jacob would not live beyond his 20s
A father murdered his terminally ill 10-year-old son in a "selfish killing" because he could no longer cope with the boy, Lewes Crown Court has heard.

It is the second time Andrew Wragg, 38, of Henty Close, Worthing, West Sussex, has gone on trial for the murder of Jacob Wragg, who had Hunter syndrome.

The former SAS soldier denies murdering his son, but admits manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

The court heard that Mr Wragg smothered Jacob with a pillow.

He then told a 999 operator that he had just "murdered his son", the jury was told.

Philip Katz QC, prosecuting, said the Crown rejected Mr Wragg's claim that at the time of Jacob's death, on 24 July 2004 at the family home, he was suffering an abnormality of mind.

'At peace'

The court also heard that although Jacob would have died young due to his rare degenerative disease, he was not at "death's door".

Mr Katz said for this reason the case could not be labelled a "mercy killing".

Andrew Wragg
Andrew Wragg told police his son's death had been a mercy killing

The court was told Mr Wragg smothered his son on 24 July last year after earlier telling his former wife Mary that Jacob had no future and implying that he was going to kill him.

Later in the evening, Mrs Wragg was told by her husband to take their other son to her mother's.

On the way there Mr Wragg called her to say "I've done it, I've killed him", the jury heard.

When she returned, Mrs Wragg found her husband by Jacob's bed, cuddling him, and she could see he was dead.

Mr Katz also told the court that Mr Wragg raised his glass in a toast to Jacob, saying he was "at peace".

The court heard that he later told police that it had been a mercy killing.

The trial continues.

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