Husband jailed over wife poisoning

A window cleaner was jailed for six years today for poisoning his wife's hot chocolate and trying to hire a hitman to kill her.

Church deacon Graeme Dust, 46, had started an affair with a woman he met on his rounds as his marriage began to fail.

Following two incidents in which he put something in her tea and had asked her to drink a pink liquid, he placed sleeping pills in her hot chocolate.

However Nina Dust, 46, said it tasted bitter as she took a sip as they had their breakfast in a cafe.

She sent it back and the cafe owner noticed white powder at the bottom of the cup, said Richard Merz, prosecuting.

Six months later, he asked a friend: "Do you know anyone who can get rid of my wife?"

The friend went to police and a meeting was arranged with an undercover officer, the Old Bailey heard.

In a recording of the meeting in a car at a sports ground, Dust said: "Did he tell you the stupid thing I did?

"I put something in her drink in a cafe and two people saw me.

"I put half a dozen sleeping pills in her drink. I thought I was going to knock her out and take her home and stick her in the car with a hose."

He said he wanted her death to look like suicide or an accident and was told it would cost £5,000.

He left saying he wanted a couple of months to think about it.

Dust and his wife had been married for 20 years and ran a window cleaning business, while Mrs Dust ran a cleaning firm.

Dust, of Holmwood Road, Enfield, north London, pleaded guilty to soliciting murder and was jailed for four years.

He also admitted administering poison involving the six sleeping tablets and was given a further two years in prison.

Mrs Dust watched him being jailed from the public gallery.

Jim Scobie, QC, said she had forgiven him and wanted him back. Dust would not have gone through with the plan which came about while he was depressed.

Judge Stephen Kramer told Dust: "It is said you committed these offences when you felt unloved.

"For whatever reason, you decided to do away with her."