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Wednesday, 12 February, 2003, 13:14 GMT
Killers 'must serve 15 years'
The pair were found guilty
Julie McGinley and Michael Monaghan at court
A woman and her lover who murdered her husband must serve at least 15 years in jail, a judge at Belfast Crown Court has ruled.

Julie McGinley, 34, and Michael Monaghan, 44, were found guilty of the murder of Gerard McGinley in December.

The remains of the Fermanagh businessman were found buried in woods across the border in County Leitrim, 10 months after he vanished in August 2000.

Sentencing the pair on Wednesday, Mr Justice Kerr described the killing of Gerard McGinley as callous and chilling.

Gerald McGinley
Gerald McGinley's body was found across the border
He said it was virtually certain the victim was sleeping soundly in his bed when the blows that killed him were struck but the exact circumstances of what happened would probably never be known.

The Crown case was that Mr McGinley was killed because he was "an impediment" to an affair between his wife and Monaghan and that they planned and executed the murder together.

Both Mrs McGinley, from Windmill Drive, and Monaghan of Ann Street, both Enniskillen, had denied the murder charge.

The jury heard that a post-mortem examination revealed Mr McGinley had been subjected to a violent death.

'Lives are over'

The victim's parents, who were in court for sentencing, said they felt sadness for their son's wife.

Gerry McGinley Senior said: "She's still my daughter-in-law today and that can't be changed.

"When they come out their lives are over, they will be near pensioners."

He said his son's children, now aged seven and five, would now have to grow up.

"In the years to come they will have to be strong but they will make it through."

During the trial, Crown lawyer Terence Mooney said the victim had been beaten to death with a blunt instrument as he slept in his bed before being stripped and "secreted" away.

He said Monaghan had revealed to a friend that Mr McGinley had a stormy relationship with his wife.

"A couple of weeks later he said a man had got 500 but had not done the job right and that another man was going to sort him out," he said.

The court heard a detective assigned to the case noticed the McGinley's bedroom had been completely redecorated.

A new bed, duvet, carpet and furniture had all been installed after the disappearance.

The remains of two fires were also spotted by police in a yard outside the house.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC NI's Shane Glynn:
"The judge said the exact circumstances of Mr McGinley's murder would probably never be known"
See also:

03 Dec 02 | N Ireland
16 Sep 02 | N Ireland
06 Apr 01 | N Ireland
Links to more N Ireland stories are at the foot of the page.


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