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Dubai editor case: Francis Matthew had debts of over Dhs1m – report

Dubai editor case: Francis Matthew had debts of over Dhs1m – report

Matthew killed his wife last year after hitting her on the head with a hammer

Former Dubai newspaper editor Francis Matthew allegedly had debts of over Dhs1m before he killed his wife, according to a report.

Matthew, 61, is currently preparing to appeal against a 10-year sentence that was handed down by a Dubai Court earlier this year, after he was found guilty of the charge of ‘physical assault leading to death’. He was accused of ‘premeditated murder’ by the prosecutors.

He claims that he hit his wife, Jane Matthews, twice on the head with a hammer at their Jumeirah home in the heat of an argument about their finances.

The incident happened on July 3 last year.

However, Jane’s brother Peter Manning has alleged that tensions between the couple had been increasing for at least a year because of Matthew’s growing debt of over Dhs1m.

“Jane felt completely trapped in Dubai by Francis. She had wanted to leave Dubai for years, but Francis would not give up his position at work. So she grew more and more unhappy. This went on for years,” Manning told The National .

“We know that the debt and Francis’s intransigence about moving to the UK meant that tension in the house was high over a long period,” he said.

“The argument was not ‘out of the blue’ as the defence claim. It puts that night in a very different light. It was not her ‘provocation’ that caused him to batter her. It was the situation he had got them into. This is a critical issue that must be examined by court.”

Also read: Senior Dubai editor pleads not guilty to wife’s murder

Francis Matthew, a British expat, had been married to his wife for more than 32 years. He called the police after hitting and killing her, and claimed burglars were responsible for the assault.

However, he later “confessed” to the Dubai Police that he committed the murder because of marital issues.

Matthew was serving as the editor-at-large of local daily Gulf News at the time of crime.

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