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Stephen Searle trial: Former UKIP councillor 'had affair with daughter-in-law'

Stephen Searle, UKIP, has won the Stowmarket South division in the county council elections. (2945717)
Stephen Searle, UKIP, has won the Stowmarket South division in the county council elections. (2945717)

A former UKIP councillor and Royal Marine murdered his wife after she discovered he was having a sexual affair with his daughter in law, it has been alleged.

Stephen Searle, 64, is on trial at Ipswich Crown Court, after allegedly strangling his wife Jessie Anne Searle to death at their home in The Brickfields, Stowmarket on December 30.

Searle, who claims that his actions had been in self defence, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder. The trial is expected to last for seven days.

Addressing the jury, prosecutor Andrew Jackson said it was likely that Searle had used a "choke hold" which he learned during his Royal Marine training to kill his wife.

Mr Jackson said the prosecution claimed that the killing of Mrs Searle, a 62-year-old mother of three grown up children, had been "quite deliberate."

Emergency services had been alerted by Searle in a telephone call in which he told an operator: "I've just killed my wife."

Police and paramedics attended the house but were unable to revive Mrs Searle who was declared dead at the scene.

Mr Jackson said: "The prosecution say the alleged murder had its root firmly in the discovery by Mrs Searle that the defendant had been having an affair with their daughter in law."

Mrs Searle had found out about the affair between her husband and Anastasia Pomiateeva in June last year when she saw text messages exchanged between the pair.

Miss Pomiateeva and Searle's son Gary had worked at Solar Bowl in Sproughton Road, Ipswich where Searle had been manager, said Mr Jackson.

It was likely that on the night of the alleged murder, Mrs Searle and her husband had been arguing, said Mr Jackson.

Searle served as a member of Suffolk County Council for UKIP between 2013 and 2017.