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Murder Retrial: 'I feel terrible about what happened' says defendant

Anderson tells jury he's caused ‘immeasurable’ pain

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

A former Castletown resident who is standing trial for murder says he feels ‘terrible’ about what he did to his wife’s lover.

Ian Anthony Anderson told a jury today (19 May) that he accepted he’d caused ‘immeasurable’ pain to the family of Neil Edward Roberts.

He was found dead at Mr Anderson’s Queen Street property in the early hours of 1 December 2013.  

Mr Anderson denies murder. You can find out more HERE.

Ian, Alison and Neil

Mr Anderson, who is now 55, was questioned about the circumstances which led to the 60-year-old gardener attending at his home on the evening of 30 November.

He told jurors Mr Roberts, who was having an affair with Alison Anderson, had called the couple for help claiming he’d crashed his car.

Mr Anderson said he went to pick him up adding it was a way of returning the favour of Mr Roberts previously looking after their dog.

The two men visited The Bay in Port Erin where Mr Anderson said he told Mr Roberts he was planning to move off the Island; in response he said Mr Roberts began talking about the name ‘Ian’.

Telling the court Mr Roberts had said it was a sign for ‘Ian, Alison and Neil’ Mr Anderson added: “That we were supposed to be together was my inference.

“He talked to me about us living together in the cottage,” Mr Anderson added: “I told him that was not going to happen and that I was leaving.”

Questioned about why he’d taken Mr Roberts back to his home Mr Anderson told jurors: “I felt like it was probably an opportunity to sort things out.

“I was leaving, and Alison was leaving the cottage, and they could get on with their lives.”

On their arrival in Castletown Mr Anderson said he’d questioned his wife and Mr Roberts about their relationship before taking Mrs Anderson’s wedding ring from her.

“She didn’t bat an eyelid,” he said: “She just carried on watching TV.”

Episodes of violence

Mr Anderson told the jury there were subsequently three ‘episodes’ of violence which, he said, started during a FaceTime call with his son in the UK.

Describing how he ‘took a blow’ to the side of his face, described as ‘very heavy’, Mr Anderson said he’d pushed Mr Roberts who had fallen backwards on to a sofa.

He was on top of him, he said, ‘restraining him’ before his wife pulled him away.

“I was kicking out just to keep him away from me,” Mr Anderson told the court. “I was saying to Neil ‘I want you to go, I’m going to call the police, I want you to go’.”

A subsequent blow to the head, Mr Anderson said, felt like ‘an electric shock’.

“I remember thinking ‘where is all this coming from?’” he added.  

Mr Anderson said Mr Roberts then came at him again, with his head down, in a way he described as ‘like a rugby tackle’.

“I was punching out trying to stop him grabbing hold of me,” he told jurors: “I remember thinking he really wants to hurt me. I was scared.

“When he came again I just lost it,” he added.


Confirming he’d kicked and punched the gardener Mr Anderson told his advocate, Crispin Aylett KC, that he didn’t remember standing or jumping on Mr Roberts.

Questioned about the injuries Mr Roberts sustained Mr Anderson accepted he was responsible for all of them and that some time passed between the conclusion of the fighting and the 999 call he made at 1.04am.

Asked by Mr Aylett KC why he’d told police, after his arrest, that he hadn’t killed Mr Roberts the engineer told the jury: “I couldn’t distinguish between kill and murder.

“I accept that I’m responsible for his death – yes.”

“How do you feel about what you did?” Mr Aylett KC asked him.

“I feel terrible about what happened – about what I’ve done,” Mr Anderson replied.


Ian Anderson denies murder.

The trial continues.

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