Murder jury set to retire

THE JURY in the trial of a businessman accused of murdering his girlfriend by running her over on a Suffolk road is expected to retire to consider its verdicts today.

THE JURY in the trial of a businessman accused of murdering his girlfriend by running her over on a Suffolk road is expected to retire to consider its verdicts today.

Before Ipswich Crown Court is Christopher Caunter, 36, of Hullbridge, Essex, who has denied murdering Deborah Townsend on July 15 2005.

Also before the court is his brother Robert Caunter, 39, of Barking and friend Joseph Brown, 39, of Romford who deny helping Christopher Caunter after 35-year-old Ms Townsend's death.

During the five week retrial it has been alleged that Caunter killed Ms Townsend, a mother-of-three, by reversing his rented Land Rover Discovery over her head on the Beccles bypass where a piece of her skull, scalp and hair were found in the road.

Ms Townsend's body was found several days later in the boot of the Discovery at Newland Hall, near Chelmsford.

Christopher Caunter fled to Thailand from where he was extradited back to the UK in April 2007.

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During the trial Caunter claimed that Ms Townsend had jumped from the car while he was driving along the A146 after an argument in the Norfolk Arms pub in Lowestoft.

The couple had driven there after Caunter's labouring business was raided by the Inland Revenue.

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