Belfast Telegraph

Monday 21 April 2014

Dentist remanded in custody over wife's death

Colin Howell

Transcripts of police interviews with a dentist accused of murdering his wife and his ex lover's husband should be complete by the end of next month a court heard today.

Other key witnesses have also been interviewed by investigating officers, District Judge Richard Wilson was told by a Crown lawyer at North Antrim magistrates' court in Coleraine.

Dr Colin Howell, aged 51, dressed in jeans and a white T-shirt, appeared by video link from Magherberry Prison, near Lisburn, County Antrim, where he has been in custody since his arrest at the end of last January.

He is accused of murdering his wife Lesley, aged 31, and constable Trevor Buchanan, aged 32, the husband of his former lover, whose bodies were found in a car filled with carbon monoxide fumes in Castlerock, County Londonderry in May 1991.

At first their deaths were treated as suicide but detectives launched a double murder investigation when Howell was arrested at his home at Glebe Road, Castlerock.

Howell is also charged with drugging and indecently assaulting four women on separate dates over a 10-year period.

After today's brief hearing he was remanded until September 21.

His ex lover, Hazel Stewart, aged 46, of Ballinstrone Road, Coleraine - she later remarried - was also remanded on continuing bail when she appeared at the same court today.

Dressed in a black suit, the blonde mother-of-two stood with her head bowed not making any eye contact with relatives of constable Buchanan who sat at the opposite side of the court. She is also charged with the two murders and she was granted continuing bail to appear in court again on October 19.

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