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Murder suspect claims he has been framed
A MAN who denies murdering his lover has said the real killer must have tried to frame him by burying her on moorland near his home.
Adrian Muir, 51, met grandmother Pamela Jackson, 55, on a dating website but their relationship was volatile due to her bipolar disorder, Newcastle Crown Court heard.
The drystone-waller from Halifax, West Yorkshire, was charged with her murder after she disappeared from her home in Chester-le-Street, County Durham, in March.
Her body was discovered 120 miles away on moors above Halifax in May while Mr Muir was in custody.
His trial heard his phone was tracked to the area of the grave on the night she vanished, and that a fingerprint of his was found on a bag containing flowers left on her body.
Mr Muir, who said he knew ‘every inch’ of Soyland Moor where he had been a beater on grouse shoots, mountain biked and ran, denied he was the murderer.
He said footage of police searching an area of moorland had appeared on the TV news, which may have inspired the real killer to bury the body there later.
Andrew Robertson QC, prosecuting, said: "The implication must be that someone else has deliberately chosen a site that would implicate you in the murder?"
Mr Muir replied: "That's the only thing I can think of."
The defendant said that his fingerprints would be on many of the plastic bags in Ms Jackson's home, as he did a lot of shopping.
He bought her some flowers and left them on the coffee table in her house, he claimed, and said the killer must have taken the flowers and a carrier bag to bury with the body.
Mr Robertson added: "It's another unfortunate coincidence that this other person, whoever they may be, has not left any of their prints on either of the bags. The only discernible print is yours. That's very bad luck."
Mr Muir replied: "It's one big bad luck. It's terrible."
Mr Robertson said to Mr Muir that he murdered his girlfriend after losing his temper then decided to commit suicide.
He said: “The assault on her was so violent that she suffered a double fracture to her skull and brain damage.
“You murdered her and you were full of remorse and you wanted to kill yourself.”
Mr Muir replied: "That's ripped my heart out to hear you say that.
"I am an innocent man.”
The trial continues.
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