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16 August 2012, 06:40
A man from Northumberland who murdered his married lover, set her body alight and claimed her family hired a hit man to kill her has been jailed for life
49 year old Stephen Streener's been found guilty of murdering Jacqueline Grant at his home in Choppington in December but told a jury that her family hired a hitman to kill her.
He tried to cover his tracks by sending himself texts from her phone, then claimed intruders broke in and killed her.
After the trial, 48-year-old Mrs Grant's husband Bob and son Robert branded Streener a "brutal monster''.
A jury saw through his lies and he was jailed for life, to serve a minimum of 18 years.
Outside court, Detective Chief Inspector Ian Bentham, who led the investigation, said:
"We welcome the verdict given to Streener which reflects the horrific nature of his crime. Our thoughts continue to be with the family of Jacqueline Grant and I want to praise and thank them for their help with the investigation and the way they have handled themselves throughout.
What Streener did was calculated and the actions of a very dangerous and disturbing man. After murdering Jacqueline Grant he tried to put plans in place to cover what he did up. These included setting fire to the crime scene, sending fake text messages to himself from Jacqueline's phone and fabricating a far-fetched story about intruders breaking into the house.
Thanks to some excellent work by our officers and the fire service, we were able to piece together what happened inside Meadowbank Drive and bring Streener to justice. I hope this result brings some form of closure to everyone affected by the incident and people can take some comfort that a dangerous individual is off the streets for a considerable period of time.''
In a statement, Mrs Grant's family said:
"The circumstances of Jacqueline's murder were horrific. She died at the hands of a brutal monster. The moments leading up to her death will continue to haunt us for the rest of our lives and we hope this monster is never released.
Jacqueline was a bubbly, kind, trusting and caring person who would help anybody in any way she could. She was an adored wife and soulmate to Bob, a mother and best-friend to Robert and an adored daughter and sister. She was a bubbly, kind sister-in-law and aunt and a kind caring friend to many. All of her family and friends miss her dreadfully.''