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Yorkie star wife-killer walks free

The star of the original Yorkie chocolate bar adverts who killed his terminally-ill wife has walked free from court after a judge showed mercy on him.

Stuart Mungall, 71, ended the life of former actress Joan, 69, at their home in Tooting, south London, last December.

The prosecution accepted his plea in July of guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility caused by depression following the strain of caring for her.

Mungall smiled and was given a thumbs-up sign from supporters in the public gallery at the Old Bailey after being given a 12-month sentence suspended for two years.

Miranda Moore, QC, defending, said Mungall had served the equivalent of six months in custody before being granted bail.

She said: "They were totally devoted to each other. They were each other's lives. At the time of her death, she had weeks to live. She was keen to stay in her own home with her husband."

The court was told at the earlier hearing that Mungall smothered his wife with a pillow as she lay in bed in what he saw as a "mercy killing".

Mungall found fame in the 1970s as the handsome lorry driver in the ads for the chunky chocolate. He went on to appear in Casualty, The Bill and other television series.

In later years the couple ran a gardening centre in south London. They were described as being devoted to each other. The business was sold because of wheelchair-bound Mrs Mungall's failing health.

Mrs Mungall, who was a lifelong friend of actress Jane Asher, had been a Royal Shakespeare Company player and she was said to be "realistic and sanguine" about her condition, the court was told.


From Belfast Telegraph