John in Mauritius for murder trial

TULLYLISH footballer John McAreavey is understood to have flown to Mauritius for the trial, due to begin today, of two men accused of the murder of his wife.

Michaela McAreavey had been John’s bride for just 10 days when she was strangled to death in their suite at the luxury hotel as the couple celebrated their honeymoon.

The pair had bought a house in Laurencetown’s Roeshill estate and planned to settle there on their return. Following Michaela’s death the people of Tullylish attended a memorial service for the girl they called their “Tullylish Rose”.

Thirty witnesses are expected to give evidence during the trial, which could last around two weeks, at the Supreme Court in the Mauritian capital Port Louis.

Michaela, who had just turned 27 at the time of her murder, had left new husband John by the poolside as she returned to their room to get some biscuits to have with her tea.

Avinash Treebhoowoon (29) and Sandip Mooneea (41), both employees at the Legends Hotel, have been charged with the murder - a charge they both deny.

A room cleaner at the hotel, Raj Theekoy, has also been named as one of the witnesses to give evidence. In a previous court hearing, Mr Theekoy said he heard a woman “shouting in pain” in room 1025 minutes before Michaela’s body was discovered there.

He said, “I heard a voice of a woman. The voice was coming from room 1025. She was shouting: ‘Ahhh!’ I heard the woman shouting like that three times.”

He added that he saw both men charged with the murder near Michaela’s suite minutes after he heard shouting from the same room.

Other hotel employees, including the chief security officer, the director of the five-star hotel and a bellboy, are to be called as witnesses, as well as a number of police officers, forensic scientists and medical experts.