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Daughter denies murdering pensioner found buried in back garden

Barbara Coombes answered ‘not guilty’ to the charge of murdering her father, Kenneth Coombes, when she appeared at Manchester Crown Court.

A woman has denied murdering her father whose body was dug up in her back garden.

Barbara Coombes answered “not guilty” to the charge of murdering Kenneth Coombes between January 1 2006 and January 31 2006 when she appeared at Manchester Crown Court on Tuesday.

Coombes, who appeared via video-link from HMP Styal, wiped away tears from underneath her black-rimmed glasses, at times appearing visibly upset during the half-hour hearing, her long, grey hair spilling over her shoulders.

The 63-year-old is alleged to have gone to a police station near her home in Matlock Road, Reddish, Stockport, in January this year, prompting a police investigation.

Officers found her father’s body in the back garden.

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Reddish murder confession

Mr Coombes, who served with the RAF during the Second World War, would have been in his late 80s at the time of his alleged murder, 12 years ago.

The defendant, a mother-of-one, is also accused of preventing the lawful burial of Mr Coombes between Janaury 1 2006 and January 31 2006.

Coombes also faces two further charges of fraud by false representation between January 15 2007 and January 10 2018 by dishonestly claiming allowances and benefits, and a similar offence of obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception between January 1 2006 and January 14 2007.

Most of Tuesday’s hearing was taken up with pre-trial administrative matters that cannot be reported before the defendant goes before a jury.

Judge David Stockdale QC, the Recorder of Manchester, remanded Coombes into custody until her trial, scheduled to begin on July 9. 

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