Dubai editor case: Francis Matthew fails to turn up in court

Matthew was found guilty of hitting his wife on the head with a hammer and killing her on July 3, 2017



Former Dubai newspaper editor Francis Matthew, who has been convicted of killing his wife Jane Matthew, failed to appear in court on Wednesday.

His lawyers had planned to request the Dubai Court of Appeal to free the 62-year-old British national, who is in detention.

Since he did not appear in court, the case has been adjourned to October 23, local media reported.

Matthew was found guilty of hitting his wife on the head with a hammer and killing her on July 3, 2017, following an argument about their finances.

He was handed a 10-year prison sentence by the Dubai criminal court in March 2018, after being convicted of “physical assault leading to death”.

His sentence was increased from 10 to 15 years by the appeals court in October, under the charge of premeditated murder.

However, in December, Dubai’s highest court – Court of Cassation – overturned the 15-year jail sentence handed to Matthew and ordered a retrial.

Matthew’s defence team has now said that since Jane Matthew’s father passed away in March and her son has dropped the charges against his father, the accused should be freed or serve a lighter sentence.

Francis Matthew had been married to his wife for more than 32 years.

He called the police after hitting and killing her in the heat of an argument about their finances and claimed burglars were responsible for the assault.

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

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