Belfast Telegraph

Michaela’s family told they ‘will get justice’ over killing

By Eimear Ni Bhraonain

The state prosecutor in Mauritius last night insisted Michaela Harte's family would get justice for her brutal murder.

In an interview with the Irish Independent, the principal state counsel for the Director of Public Prosecutions office in Mauritius, Mehdi Choony, also pleaded with the Irish people: “Trust us, we know what we are doing.”

And he launched a scathing attack on defence lawyers representing the two men charged with murdering 27-year-old Michaela, daughter of Tyrone GAA manager Mickey Harte.

Mr Choony accused the legal team defending the accused of being “intellectually dishonest” and claimed they had spent the past week using “delaying tactics”.

Sandip Moneea (41) and Avinash Treebhowon (30) are accused of killing Michaela while she was on honeymoon with her husband, Down GAA star John McAreavey, in the luxury Legends Hotel on January 10.

Mr Choony insisted justice would be done and urged people to be patient and let the process take its course.

He said: “The Irish people should wait and see what evidence is put before the court. That's the best way of doing it — let us start.”

The preliminary inquiry into the murder has been stalled for the past week as defence lawyers have sought to have the magistrate, Sheila Bonomally, removed from hearing the case.

They also want to cross-examine Mr McAreavey.

Mr Choony, who studied law at UCD in Dublin and went to boarding school in Co Sligo, has refused to comment on the case until now.

He said he felt compelled to speak because of the behaviour of other parties in the case who have been leaking information to the media.

The prosecutor also hit out at “serious” leaks emerging from the case.

He said: “I cannot comment on this but what is serious here is that there has been leakage and it has to stop.”

Yesterday’s court sitting was adjourned until Monday.

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