Life sentence for woman in 'fatal attraction' case: Divorcee recruited her 16-year-old son to murder love rival

A DIVORCEE with a 'fatal attraction and obsession' for her married driving instructor was jailed for life yesterday after being convicted of murdering her rival in love.

As she was taken to the cells at the Old Bailey, Rene Sampat shouted: 'I am not guilty of murder - I am guilty of love'.

Her 18-year-old son Roy Aziz, whom she recruited to kill Janet Marshall, was also convicted of murder. He was ordered to be detained during Her Majesty's pleasure. He was 16 at the time of the murder.

The court was told that Sampat, 37, had a passionate infatuation for Ancell Marshall, a driving instructor. But everything she tried to gain his affection failed, so 'she determined his wife should be murdered so he could be hers', Nigel Sweeney, for the prosecution, said.

Mrs Marshall, 36, a Sunday school teacher, was repeatedly stabbed and strangled at her home in north London in April 1991. Her husband was charged with the murder and held in custody for two months. He was refused permission to attend the funeral.

At his trial in February 1992, Sampat gave evidence for the prosecution, but he was cleared and a second inquiry began.

Judge Richard Lowry said yesterday: 'There should be further investigation into the first inquiry which led to an innocent man being charged with the murder of his wife.'

Graham Boal QC, for the defence, said Sampat was a 'woman who was obsessed to a point which could be described as mentally abnormal'.

He went on: 'You may think this has been realistically described as a fatal attraction and a fatal obsession.'

The court was told that the Marshalls, of Tottenham, were a happy couple who had a stable and loving relationship. Mr Marshall, 37, had two businesses - a driving school and a takeaway food shop - and was a home missionary at his Seventh Day Baptist church, acting as a counsellor.

But there was 'a shadow over them which had been there for some years - the activities of Rene, who was infatuated with Ancell. They had first met in 1985 when she was a pupil at his school,' Mr Sweeney told the court.

In her attempts to gain his affection, Sampat, a Muslim, joined the church where he worshipped, forced gifts on his children and went out of her way to impress the family.

Three times Sampat, of south Tottenham, claimed she had been raped, in an attempt to gain Mr Marshall's sympathy. She then 'took to writing poison pen letters designed to split the couple up', Mr Sweeney told the court.

One letter included a threat that Mrs Marshall would die within a year of the birth of her fourth daughter. Her death in 1991 came just a few days before the year was up.

After the case, Mr Marshall described Sampat 'a very, very evil woman'. He added: 'My feelings towards her now are that she is demonic, she is wicked. I believe she has been used greatly by the devil.'

Detective Superintendent Gavin Robertson, who led the second inquiry, said: 'I accept aspects of the first inquiry were wrong and we tried to right that wrong. We are big enough to accept that a mistake was made and to get on with setting it right.'

Mr Marshall said he was considering legal action.

Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again say analysts

News
A Brazilian wandering spider
news

World's most lethal spider found under a bunch of bananas

Life and Style
fashion

British supermodel and hitmaker join forces to launch a 'huge song'

News
news

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge announce they are set to welcome second child in spring

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
gaming

I Am Bread could actually a challenging and nuanced title

Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in the win over QPR
footballInternet reacts to miss shocker for Liverpool striker
News
news

Footage shot by a passerby shows moment an ill man was carried out of his burning home

Voices
Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea
voices
News
i100
News
Kimi the fox cub
newsBurberry under fire from animal rights group - and their star, Kimi
Sport
Fans of Palmeiras looks dejected during the match between Palmeiras and Santos
footballPalmeiras fan killed trying to 'ambush' bus full of opposition supporters
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
filmsIt's nearly a wrap on Star Wars: Episode 7, producer reveals
News
i100
Travel
travel

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

KS1 & KS2 Teacher

£85 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Chester: Day to Day job opportunities f...

Primary Teachers needed in Cheshire West

£85 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Chester: Day to Day job opportunities f...

NQT Job Opportunties in Winsford

£85 - £100 per day: Randstad Education Chester: Are you a Newly Qualified Teac...

Year 3 Teachers needed for supply roles

£110 - £130 per day + Competitive rates of pay: Randstad Education Reading: Ye...

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past