Three charged with honeymoon murder in Mauritius

Port Louis – Three valets at Mauritius’ Legends hotel were charged with the death of the daughter of a top Irish sports personality who was strangled while on honeymoon, police said today.

They appeared before Mapou district court in the north of the Indian Ocean island where two of them were provisionally charged with the murder of Michaela McAreavey and the third with complicity to murder, said a police source.

After the hearing, the three, aged 29 to 41, were remanded in police custody. They will appear in court again in a week’s time.

Police said the suspects were the last people to have been in contact with the victim before her death on Monday.

The hearing comes as family members started arriving on the island. Michaela’s brother, Mark Harte, and the brother of bridegroom John McAreavey have already arrived, said Tourism Minister Nando Bodha, and her father, Mickey Harte, is expected tomorrow.

“This morning we welcomed the brother of the late Michaela, and John McAreavey’s brother.

We will welcome the victim’s father tomorrow and everything will be done to enable the family to return home with the body on Saturday,” Bodha said.

The death has rocked Ireland.

The 27-year-old teacher and former beauty queen was the daughter of Tyrone Gaelic football boss Mickey Harte, one of Ireland’s best-known sporting figures.

Computer records from the victim’s hotel room show that someone entered the room two minutes before she did, police sources involved in the investigation said today.

Police forensic expert Harish Baichoo told reporters “asphyxia due to compression of the neck” was the cause of death.

“Mauritius is a country where the rule of law exists, and we have every confidence that the police and the judiciary will track down and punish the guilty parties,” said Bodha.

Mauritius, a volcanic island surrounded by coral reefs and lagoons, is best known for top-end tourism and as a honeymoon destination. It welcomes 950 000 tourists per year.

John McAreavey is a nephew of Bishop John McAreavey of the Catholic diocese of Dromore in Northern Ireland.

Michaela McAreavey taught Irish and was a former contestant in Ireland’s popular Rose of Tralee beauty pageant.

Gaelic football is the most popular sport in Ireland, and many players and managers are considered celebrities.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Who do you think is going to win the 2020 US election?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Biden is going to take it
46% - 6006 votes
It's four more years for Trump
54% - 7091 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
16.30
(+0.85)
ZAR/GBP
21.35
(-0.17)
ZAR/EUR
19.32
(+0.73)
ZAR/AUD
11.58
(+0.17)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.07)
Gold
1923.80
(+0.72)
Silver
25.10
(+1.52)
Platinum
893.00
(+2.52)
Brent Crude
43.05
(+1.28)
Palladium
2395.00
(+0.71)
All Share
55195.30
(-0.14)
Top 40
50770.62
(-0.16)
Financial 15
10064.55
(+1.09)
Industrial 25
74718.88
(-1.12)
Resource 10
54098.79
(+0.58)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo