Belfast Telegraph

Home News World

Michaela McAreavey: Family offers £43,000 reward in the hunt for her killer in Mauritius

By David Young, PA

The widower of murdered honeymooner Michaela McAreavey has offered a reward for help in catching his wife's killer.

John McAreavey has returned to Mauritius where Michaela was strangled, to make an emotional public appeal for help, and to announce a reward of 2m mauritian rupees (around £43,000). He said he felt betrayed by the justice authorities on the holiday island, accusing them of inaction in the stalled investigation.

Read More: Michaela McAreavey: Families still waiting for justice so cruelly denied

Mrs McAreavey, a 27-year-old teacher who was the only daughter of Tyrone Gaelic football manager Mickey Harte, was killed in her room in a luxury resort hotel in 2011.

Two former hotel workers - Avinash Treebhoowoon and Sandip Moneea - were acquitted of the crime after a high-profile trial in the summer of 2012.

Mr McAreavey, who has since remarried, said his quest for justice would not end until those responsible were brought to justice. "Over the past six-and-a-half years our resolve to win justice for Michaela remains undiminished," he said.

"We believe we have given the Mauritian authorities every chance to deliver on their very public promise that justice would be done.

"However, until this visit the reality falls far short of that and, as the years have passed, it appears that the unofficial policy has become one of 'out of sight - out of mind.'

"But we have no intention of just slipping out of mind or sight.

"Michaela deserves justice and we intend to get it.

"We should not have needed to make this very painful return journey.

"Put quite bluntly, we have felt let down time and time again, and, indeed, feel betrayed by a process that has failed us and Michaela."

The reward will be paid to anyone who provides information that leads to the successful prosecution of the killer or killers.

Mr McAreavey was accompanied by his sister, Claire, and Mrs McAreavey's brother, Mark, as he addressed the media in the Mauritian capital of Port Louis. He has already met police chiefs and Mauritian Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth on the visit.

"Today, we take some comfort from the assurances given by the Prime Minister yesterday that Michaela will get justice, but to achieve that we need the help of those who may know something, but have not yet come forward for whatever reason," he said.

"Therefore, we are now making a direct appeal to the people of Mauritius, many of whom have shown us kindness and sympathy, and who were outraged at the atrocity at the time, to come forward with any piece of information, no matter how small, but which may be relevant in bringing the day of justice closer for the killers of Michaela.

"It is our sincere hope that the substantial reward which we are offering will send out a powerful message about our determination to keep on seeking justice."

A confidential telephone hotline has been set up to enable people to contact the Mauritian police anonymously.

"As time marches on this could be our final chance to obtain justice for Michaela, but we can't do it alone," he continued. "We need the help of the people of Mauritius. Please help us as our fight goes on."

Mr McAreavey remarried in September last year.

His wife Tara Brennan is an accountant from Co Kildare.

It was recently reported that Treebhoowoon is launching a legal bid for damages after he spent 18 months in custody before being found not guilty.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph