Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Michaela McAreavey murder trial: 30 witnesses will give evidence

John McAreavey and his late wife Michaela McAreavey
John McAreavey and his late wife Michaela McAreavey

Thirty witnesses are to give evidence next week at the trial of two men accused of killing Michaela McAreavey in Mauritius.

The 27-year-old daughter of Tyrone football manager Mickey Harte was murdered in January last year at the Legends Hotel in Grand Gaube where she was on honeymoon with new husband John McAreavey.

Mr McAreavey has also been listed as one of the witnesses to give evidence in the case which is due to begin next Tuesday at the Supreme Court in the capital Port Louis.

Avinash Treebhoowoon (29) and Sandip Mooneea (41), both employees at the Legends Hotel, have been charged with Michaela’s murder. They have consistently denied the charge.

A room cleaner at the hotel, Raj Theekoy, has also been named as one of the witnesses to give evidence. In a previous court hearing, Mr Theekoy said he heard a woman “shouting in pain” in room 1025 minutes before Michaela’s body was discovered there.

“I heard a voice of a woman. The voice was coming from room 1025.

“She was shouting: ‘Ahhh!’ I heard the woman shouting like that three times,” Mr Theekoy said. He also admitted he saw both murder accused Mooneea and Treebhoowoon near Michaela’s suite minutes after he heard shouting from the same room.

Other hotel employees, including the chief security officer, the director of the five-star hotel and a bellboy, are all to be called as witnesses, alongside a number of police officers, forensic scientists and medical experts.

The trial is expected to last at least two weeks.

Michaela died after she went to the couple’s room to fetch some biscuits to have with a cup of tea.

She is thought to have unwittingly stumbled into a burglary and was attacked by the robbers.

When she did not return her husband went to look for her and found her lifeless body in the bath.

It is understood that Michaela’s father, Tyrone GAA boss Mickey Harte, will not attend the trial.

Her husband John will be accompanied by other family members.

Background

Michaela McAreavey, the daughter of Tyrone football manager Mickey Harte, was murdered while on honeymoon in Mauritius in January 2011. The 27-year-old teacher died after she went to her bedroom at the Legends Hotel.

She is thought to have unwittingly stumbled into a burglary and was attacked by the robbers. Two of the hotel staff are to stand trial next week for murder.

Nightlife Galleries

More

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz