McAreavey Accused Claims Confessions Were Forced

The jury in the Michaela McAreavey case has heard from one of the accused that police tried to suffocate him with a towel and held his head in a bucket of water while he was interrogated.

Avinash Treebhoowoon, 30, confessed to police about his involvement in strangling the daughter of Tyrone Gaelic football boss Mickey Harte, but now insists he was forced to sign the statement.

His lawyer Sanjeev Teeluckdharry repeated a complaint his client made to court authorities in the days after the death in January last year.

The accused alleges he was beaten in the face and on the heels.

Reading his client’s statement, Mr Teeluckdharry said: “I was made to suffocate in a towel.”

He said on one occasion officers filled a bucket of water. “I was on a chair, I was gripped by the neck and placed in that pail of water,” read his lawyer.

Mr Treebhoowoon, and co-accused Sandip Moneea, 42, deny murdering the 27-year-old teacher at the Legends Hotel, where she was spending her honeymoon with Down footballer John McAreavey.

The court also heard Mr Treebhoowoon was not wearing an anti-contamination suit when he was taken to the crime scene for a reconstruction three days after the murder.

The case against hotel room attendant Mr Treebhoowoon, from Plaine des Roches, and floor supervisor Mr Moneea, from Petit Raffray, is expected to last two to three weeks.


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