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Last Updated: Tuesday, 18 March 2008, 08:43 GMT
'Wife in barrel' killer sentenced
Fred and Edwina Boyle
Fred and Edwina Boyle moved from Cardiff to Melbourne
A man has been jailed in Australia for shooting his wife in the head 25 years ago and then dumping her body in a metal drum.

Frederick Boyle, 58, originally from Peterson-super-Ely, Vale of Glamorgan, was convicted last month of the 1983 murder of his wife Edwina.

Her remains were discovered during a house clear-up in 2006.

A judge at Victoria Supreme Court in Melbourne gave Boyle a 21-year sentence with no chance of parole for 17 years.

He had denied his wife's murder but after a week-long trial, the jury of three women and nine men found Boyle guilty.

He shot his wife Edwina, then aged 30, on 6 October, 1983, and hid her body in a drum on their property.

In a statement, Justice Jack Forrest said Boyle had shown "no remorse whatsoever.

"You have sought to live a lie, with the sole aim of avoiding apprehension for your dastardly actions.

"Rather than admit your wrongdoing, you determined to construct a web of deceit and lies designed to deceive others into believing that the deceased had left you and run off with another man," he added.

The couple, who had met on Cardiff buses, shared a home in suburban Dandenong North, Melbourne, with their two daughters, Careesa and Sharon.

Boyle told his children that their mother had run off with a truck driver called Ray.

Sister's worries

But Mrs Boyle's sister Valerie Bordley, from Watford, had concerns and reported her sister missing in 1994.

Ms Bordley also hired private detectives and said she was in regular contact with police about her sister's disappearance.

After Edwina Boyle's disappearance, Boyle moved twice - each time taking the 44-gallon drum containing her remains.

Valerie Bordley
Valerie Bordley fought for justice for her sister

Despite saying his wife had left him, Boyle later claimed he had panicked when he found his wife dead in bed.

He said he did not report his wife's death, fearing he would be charged with her murder because he was having an affair with another woman.

The court heard that "within days" of Edwina Boyle's disappearance, Virginia Gissara moved in with the family and stayed there for seven years.

Giving evidence, Michael Hegarty, Careesa's former husband, said he became suspicious after first noticing the container in the Boyles' back garden in 1990.

He said he thought he knew what was in it and opened it to find women's clothes, including underwear and a large hessian bag.

He did not look in the bag then - but two weeks later he opened i t- which was now in a wheelie bin in the garage.

He found bones which were later identified as that of Edwina Boyle.

Mrs Bordley said after the trial that the hearing had been harrowing and the worst thing for her was hearing how and where her sister's body was found.

"I just can't get that out of my head," she said.

"Justice has now been done - I just feel so sorry for my nieces," she added.


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