Evil killers jailed for 30 years for Christopher Hartley shooting
May 5 2010 Huddersfield Daily Examiner
A MAN who plotted the contract killing of his former gay lover and business partner has been jailed for at least 30 years.
Car dealer and drug manufacturer Christopher Hartley was found with gunshot wounds to the head and chest on a quiet country road in Huddersfield last September after David Large, 36, (pictured) recruited his close friend Simon Mullen, 39, to carry out the brutal murder.
Yesterday the pair, who will both serve a minimum of 30 years, showed no emotion as the jury found them both guilty of murdering Mr Hartley at the end of a 36-day trial at Bradford Crown Court.
Judge James Goss QC told the duo, who had become friends while in prison, that it had been a “calculated, cold-blooded and brutal crime” which involved efforts to make it look as if the killing had been the result of a drugs deal gone wrong.
Mr Hartley (pictured) was found gunned down in Litherop Lane, Clayton West.
Before Judge Goss passed sentence, he heard details of the devastating effect that Mr Hartley's death had had on his family.
The court heard that his mother Vera knew little about Mr Hartley’s activities and saw him as her “treasured son”.
Brother Steven Hartley said in a victim impact statement that his mother had treated Large as a “fourth son” and the family would have to live with his betrayal of them for the rest of their lives.
“'David and Chris were always together. Indeed he had been part of this family for many, many years,” said Mr Hartley.
“We trusted him as he was Chris’ closest friend.