Magistrate denies plot to murder wife with gas

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The Independent Online
(First Edition)

A MAGISTRATE accused of trying to murder his wife with a home-made gas chamber told police he drilled a hole in their bedroom wall for a 'birthday surprise' sink, a jury was told yesterday.

Cranog Jones, 44, denied making the hole so he could run a pipe from his wife Margaret's car to a wooden box in the bedroom which he intended to use to gas her.

Winchester Crown Court was told that Mr Jones, a businessman, said the hole was for a sink which was to be a surprise for his wife's birthday.

The prosecution claims Mr Jones tried to kill his 43-year-old wife with the DIY gas chamber in December 1991 after he began an affair with another woman. The court was told he planned to commit the 'perfect murder' by carrying her body to her car to make her death look like suicide.

Christopher Clark, for the prosecution, said that Mr Jones told police he had run piping across the conservatory roof and through the hole at the house in Brockhampton, Gloucestershire, to see if it was noticeable. He said he removed it and blocked the hole to keep out the draught.

Mr Jones, of Wymans Brook, Cheltenham, denies attempted murder.

The trial resumes on Monday.