A MAN convicted of murdering Omagh woman, Charlotte Murray, has been told he must serve a minimum of 16 years in prison before being eligible for parole.
Members of her family sobbed as Johnny Miller was led away from the dock at Dungannon Crown Court.
In a statement read outside afterwards, they called for Miller not to be released until he reveals where their sister and daughter’s body is.
Delivering the sentence, Judge Stephen Fowler QC, said that there were aggravating factors in the case which had led him to decide on how long Miller must serve.
He said that these included Charlotte’s vulnerability at the time of her murder, including that she was isolated and was killed in her own home where she should have felt safe.
Judge Fowler said that she would have been no physical match for Miller, who he described as a canoeist and a sub-aqua diver.
Commending the PSNI for their efforts in trying to find Charlotte’s body, he added that the fact there was no body and therefore no injuries or information on how she had been killed was also an aggravating factor.
“This case involves the disposal of the body and means that there has been no form of closure for the family and the denial of a burial continues to cause pain, distress and hurt,” Judge Fowler added.
He went on to say that Miller had also created a false trail in a bid to evade detection and that the absence of a body meant there was no way of knowing how she had died.
Detailed victim impact statements from Charlotte’s family were summarised to the court.
In one of them, Charlotte’s twin sister, Denise, spoke of how she still agonised over the fact that she had fallen out with her and had never got the opportunity to make up.
Judge Fowler said she had also spoken of how the impact of the killing had affected her children.
He said that her brothers told of how Charlotte’s death had caused ‘irreparable damage’ and that their most fervent wish now was for Johnny Miller to tell them where he had disposed of her body in order for them to lay her to rest and grieve.