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Murder Retrial: Accused was 'consumed by jealousy' alleges prosecutor

Anderson denies murdering wife's lover in 2013

*This report contains information which some readers may find distressing. 

The former Castletown resident accused of murdering his love ‘rival’ allegedly told police a ‘pack of lies’ following his arrest.

Ian Anthony Anderson is standing trial charged with the murder of Neil Edward Roberts almost a decade ago.

At Douglas Courthouse yesterday (19 May) he was cross-examined after giving his account of fighting which broke out at his home on Queen Street.

Mr Roberts was pronounced dead of 1 December 2013 – he had more than 70 injuries.

You can find out more HERE.

Losing it

Mr Anderson told the jury he’d ‘just lost it’ after Mr Roberts attacked him on three occasions, in close proximity, after the duo had returned from the pub.

“What was it that you lost?” prosecuting advocate Peter Wright KC asked him.

“Control. I just lost my mind. I went doolally,” the 55-year-old responded: “My mind. I lost my mind. I lost my ability to control myself.”

Describing how he’d started ‘kicking and punching’, due to being in fear of his life, Mr Anderson added: “I accept that the force I used was deliberate.”

Stating that he’d been ‘remorseful’ since the day of Mr Roberts’ death Mr Anderson was quizzed as to whether he was ‘deliberately seeking to avoid responsibility’ for what he’d done.  

Questioned as to why the night of 30 November had descended into violence Mr Anderson said he’d been ‘angry’, ‘upset’ and ‘hurt’.

“You didn’t descend into this such violence because you were provoked did you?” the prosecutor asked him.

“No,” Mr Anderson replied.

“You did what you did because you were consumed by jealousy didn’t you?” the prosecutor asked.

“Yes,” Mr Anderson said.

When asked why it had taken so long to recognise this as being the reason for his actions Mr Anderson replied: “I’m struggling to answer that question. I don’t know.”

Force

Accepting that he’d used ‘very severe force’ towards the 60-year-old, who the jury was told was having an affair with Alison Anderson, Mr Anderson said he had no recollection of stamping on him.

“You must have intended to kill this man,” Mr Wright KC put to him.

“No. I never intended any of this to happen at all,” Mr Anderson replied.

Quizzing Mr Anderson about the delay in calling an ambulance for Mr Roberts the prosecutor queried why he’d forcibly cut his wife’s hair whilst the man's body was lying on the living room floor.   

“Consumed by jealousy you’d completely lost your temper, killed a man and humiliated your wife,” Mr Wright KC said.

“Yes,” Mr Anderson replied.

“This was all revenge wasn’t it?” the prosecutor asked him.

“No,” replied Mr Anderson.

Fiction

The prosecutor described Mr Anderson’s account of the violence - in which he was said to have beaten ‘the living daylights’ out of Mr Roberts - as ‘fiction’ saying he believed it was ‘one continuing episode’ which had lasted around 15 minutes.

Mr Wright KC also questioned whether the 999 call - which was previously played to the jury – was delayed because Mr Anderson was ‘coming up with a story’.

“You were trying to get your head around what you’d just done weren’t you? Why didn’t you say in your 999 call ‘I lost it’,” he asked.

“I don’t know,” Mr Anderson replied.

Highlighting that Mr Anderson’s previous argument of self-defence had ‘evaporated’ Mr Wright KC added: “This is just the latest version of matters isn’t’ it?”

Mr Anderson told jurors he didn’t accept he’d been modifying what he said to the emergency services to keep up with the ‘narrative’ of a self-defence argument.

He did, he said, acknowledge that he gave the impression he was the victim.

Pondering why this was, ‘because it was clearly not true’, Mr Wright KC queried whether his claims that he’d ‘lost it’ were a ‘more recent invention’.  

Custody

The court heard that following his arrest, and subsequent time in hospital, Mr Anderson had asked police officers about Mr Roberts and where he was.

Highlighting that Mr Anderson had passed all medical checks, directly after his arrest, with ‘flying colours’ Mr Wright KC said he knew ‘full well’ he’d been arrested on suspicion of murder.

“Your mind was working overtime to try and think of a way out of your predicament,” he told Mr Anderson: “You knew full well what you’d done but couldn’t find it in yourself to admit it.”  

In response Mr Anderson replied: “I killed Neil. I’ve accepted that.”

Any sentiment of concern for Mr Roberts, the prosecutor alleged, was ‘utterly hollow’ whilst Mr Anderson was trying to ‘paint a most misleading narrative’ – with Mr Wright KC describing the situation as ‘utterly bogus’.

Mr Anderson’s claims, of not remembering some of the detail of what had happened, were his way of ‘seeking to build the picture of amnesia setting in’ said Mr Wright KC – something Mr Anderson denied.

Asked why he didn't admit killing Mr Roberts during police interview Mr Anderson replied: “I couldn’t distinguish between murder and kill.”

“Never once did you say ‘I lost it’ never once. Did you?” the prosecutor pressed.

“I don’t recall,” replied Mr Anderson who later told the jury he did accept it was an unlawful killing and that he had not used reasonable force.

Mr Wright KC also quizzed Mr Anderson about why he’d stopped answering questions during his interviews in police custody.

“Is that because your version was at risk of unravelling Mr Anderson?” he asked.

“No,” the defendant replied.

Responsibility

“The sad reality here Mr Anderson is that you’d simply got to the end of your tether hadn’t you?” Mr Wright KC asked: “You killed your rival didn’t you?”

“I killed Neil, yes, but it wasn’t as a rival,” Mr Anderson replied.

“I suggest even to this day you simply can’t face up to it can you?” the prosecutor added.

Trial

Ian Anderson denies murder.

The trial continues.

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