John McAreavey’s frantic bid to revive the body of his lifeless bride Michaela was outlined in harrowing detail as prosecutors opened the case against the men accused of her murder.
That morning in January last year had started out so well, the jury heard, with the couple having breakfast together before John went for a golf lesson while Michaela decided to go for a dip in the pool at the Legends Hotel.
Chief prosecutor Mehdi Manrakhan told Mauritius’ Supreme Court they then met up for something to eat at the restaurant beside the pool.
“After having had their lunch Michaela ordered tea and went to her room to fetch her biscuits which she was fond of having with her tea. John stayed behind at the restaurant and waited and waited for her to come back,” he said.
“Members of the jury, Michaela would never return to John. This was the last time that John saw his beautiful wife Michaela alive.”
Concerned as to what had happened to his wife, Mr Manrakhan said Mr McAreavey settled the lunch bill and went back to their room — 1025.
“Reaching room 1025, since John did not have his magnetic key card with him, he had to knock on the door,” said the lawyer.
“Seeing that there was no answer he decided to go to the hotel reception to ask for help. A bell boy accompanied him back to room 1025 to allow him to enter the room.
“Members of the jury, as soon as John entered room 1025 his worst nightmare began. In the bathroom John saw Michaela lying senseless in the bathtub.
“John removed Michaela from the bathtub, laid her on the floor, and went to cry for help.
“The bell boy who had accompanied John was still in the vicinity of room 1025 and they both went back to room 1025 where John tried to revive Michaela.
“Members of the jury, it was too late. Michaela was already dead.”
The court also heard that police catastrophically failed to take crime scene photos that may have helped in the investigation.
Defence lawyer Ravi Rutnah repeatedly challenged a Mauritian police photographer on why certain supposedly relevant items and areas had not been assessed or captured in the hours after the body was found.
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