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Rena Salmon, who murdered pregnant mistress of Belfast husband, released from jail but she has terminal cancer

By Allan Preston

The ex-wife of a Belfast-born businessman who gunned down his pregnant mistress 14 years ago has been released from prison.

Rena Salmon, now aged 56, hit national headlines in September 2002 after she shot Glasgow-born Lorna Stewart (36) at her London salon in a jealous rage. A former sharpshooter for the Army, Rena had met her then husband Paul Salmon while stationed in Northern Ireland.

He was working as an Army technician at the time before he left to launch a successful career as an IT consultant in England.

The Salmons married and had two children, settling in the village of Great Shefford, near Hungerford, Berkshire.

The family became good friends with Keith Rodrigues and his wife Lorna Stewart before the affair began.

After learning of the infidelity, Ms Salmon took a double-barrelled shotgun to the beauty parlour and later texted her husband to confess the crime.

The Daily Mail reported that since her release in September from Askham Grange prison in North Yorkshire, Rena Salmon has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

"I had a heart attack last year and I'm having treatment for cancer," she said.

"I do voluntary work, I live on my own, I don't want people to know where I am.

"I have breast cancer with secondary cancer. I had surgery last year, but because of my heart I couldn't have chemo.

"I've had radiotherapy, but they don't know how long I've got left. I'm just taking things day by day."

She told the Daily Mail she would spend her first Christmas on the outside alone. "It will be quiet, but I don't mind. I'm used to spending Christmas on my own - I did it for 14 years."

After her conviction in 2003, her former husband Paul Salmon, now 56, married again in 2004 to his girlfriend Cheryl Adams.

It's reported they now live overseas with their young family.

During the 2003 trial he had admitted to other affairs, but had been living with Lorna Stewart for months before her death.

He also told the court that Rena Salmon had launched a campaign of intimidation against Ms Stewart in the build-up to the killing.

Days before the tragedy, it was reported that Mr Salmon had been warned by a friend to remove the guns he kept in his matrimonial home for game shooting "because Rena has access to them and is going to shoot Lorna".

However, Ms Salmon hired a locksmith to open the gun cabinet, claiming her husband was dead.

Mr Salmon later said it was "one of the greatest regrets of my life" that he did not remove the weapons.

Despite her conviction, Rena Salmon has always denied the killing was murder, claiming diminished responsibility and provocation for her actions.

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