A JUDGE told a wife whose husband was murdered by her former lover ‘not to blame herself’.
Judge Peter Benson made his thoughts clear as he jailed callous killer Kenneth Bill for life for the murder of John Hay – and said Bill must serve at least 22 years.
He told the court Mrs Carol Hay should not feel guilty because she could never have thought a 63-year-old man of previous good character would behave in that way.
He added: “She must not, in any way, blame herself for that.”
Bill, a Holmfirth businessman, murdered builder and former police officer Mr Hay, 61, in cold blood on March 15, before disposing of his body on a bonfire which burned for three days.
During a three-week trial at Bradford Crown Court the jury was told how Bill had rekindled his relationship with Mr Hay’s wife Carol more than 30 years after they had been a couple.
But when she ended the secret affair in February, he became obsessed with the relationship and plotted to kill her husband.
Bill was unanimously found guilty of Mr Hay’s murder on Thursday and showed no emotion as the sentence was passed yesterday.
Judge Benson told the packed courtroom: “It seems to me that you were obsessed with Mrs Hay and ruthlessly, and in a detailed way, carried out this murder.”
The court heard how Bill lured Mr Hay to meet him on March 15, with the promise of work after disguising his voice in a phone call to him.
Judge Benson continued: “You lured him into your car and took him to a unit in Meltham Mills.
“You bolted the door and then you killed him.