Man who killed for inheritance jailed for life Man given life for murders at remote farm Life sentences for farmhouse double murder sentenced to life given life for killing fiancee's parents

A man was given two life sentences yesterday for killing his fiancee's parents to obtain her £150,000 inheritance.

Jonathan Jones, 34, secretly drove 200 miles from his home in Orpington, Kent, to the isolated South Wales farmhouse of Harry and Megan Tooze where he killed them with a shotgun.

He then returned to the flat he shared with their only daughter, Cheryl, also 34, pretending he had spent the day looking for rented offices to set up a market research firm.

Police found the bloodstained bodies of the Toozes under hay bales in a cowshed at their smallholding at Llanharry, Mid-Glamorgan. Jones hid his secret, attending a news conference where Cheryl made a television appeal for information to help catch the killer.

He was arrested and charged five months after the murders although police could find no forensic evidence for the prosecution case. After a 12-week trial at Newport Crown Court, Gwent, Jones was found guilty of by majority 10-2 verdicts after the jury spent two days deliberating the case.

Sentencing him to concurrent life sentences, Mr Justice Rougier said Jones had been found guilty of the "ruthless and terrible" killings of the Toozes in July 1993.

Jones shook his head as he was led away. Cheryl Tooze was not in court for the verdicts but she has stood by Jones since his arrest five months after the deaths of her parents shocked the close-knit Welsh farming community.

The court heard that Jones and Miss Tooze were regularly in arrears with their rent and the ambitious Jones was planning to set up a market research firm although he had less than £100 in his bank account. He knew his bride-to-be was the sole beneficiary of her parents' estate.

Mr Tooze, 64, and his wife, 67, were both shot in the head from close range and died instantly. Neighbours who heard shots thought Mr Tooze, a retired fruit wholesaler, was shooting rabbits. Jones first shared a cup of tea with his victims, leaving his left thumbprint on a cup and saucer. But police found no evidence from his clothes or car to link him directly to the crime. The murder weapon was never found. No estate agents in Orpington, where Jones said he was looking for premises, remembered seeing him on the day of the murders.

Giving evidence during the trial, Miss Tooze said she did not believe her fiance had killed her parents. She and Jones had been together for eight years since meeting on a business studies course at the Polytechnic of Wales.

The jury was told there was several hours' delay in sealing off the scene of the crime because police first suspected suicide rather than murder. Jones gave evidence in his defence insisting his innocence and claiming he was "like a son" to Harry Tooze.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
beautyBelgian fan lands L'Oreal campaign after being spotted at World Cup
Extras
indybest
Arts and Entertainment
Chocolat author Joanne Harris has spoken about the financial struggles most authors face
books
Arts and Entertainment
Characters in the new series are based on real people, say its creators, unlike Arya and Clegane the Dog in ‘Game of Thrones’
tv'The Last Kingdom' is based on historical events
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
filmSir Ian McKellen will play retired detective in new film
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
'Molecular Man +1+1+1' by Jonathan Borofsky at Yorkshire Sculpture park
tv
News
Glamour magazine hosts a yoga class with Yogalosophy author Mandy Ingber on June 10, 2013 in New York City.
newsFather Padraig O'Baoill said the exercise was 'unsavoury' in a weekly parish newsletter
Extras
indybest
News
people'She is unstoppable', says Jean Paul Gaultier at Paris show
Sport
Alexis Sanchez and apparently his barber Carlos Moles in Barcelona today
football
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
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

C# Senior Web developer (C#, VBA, Strong Education,C++, JAVA)

£40000 - £80000 per annum + benefits+bonus+package: Harrington Starr: C# Senio...

Sales Perfomance Manager. Marylebone, London

£45-£57k OTE £75k : Charter Selection: Major London International Fashion and ...

Sales Manager (Fashion and Jewellery), Paddington, London

£45-£55k OTE £75k : Charter Selection: Major London International Fashion and ...

Marketing Manager

£36000 - £38000 per annum: Charter Selection: Charter Selection are working wi...

Day In a Page

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice
Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

Hollywood targets Asian audiences

The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
10 best girls' summer dresses

Frock chick: 10 best girls' summer dresses

Get them ready for the holidays with these cool and pretty options 
Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

Westminster’s dark secret

Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

Naked censorship?

The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests
Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

As England take on India at Trent Bridge, here is our pick of the high-performing bats to help you up your run-count this summer 
Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014 comment: David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

Captain appears to give up as shocking 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat threatens ramifications in Brazil