25/Apr/2014 - Last News Update: 05:47

Man jailed for 26 years for murder of holiday friend, 67

Category: England

Published: 5th Oct 2011 12:14:10

A man has been jailed for at least 26 years for bludgeoning a friend to death after they met on holiday.

Stuart Crawford, 45, of no fixed address, then cleared out Michael Ryan's bank accounts of £7,250 and fled to Thailand in September 2008.

Mr Ryan's body was found rolled in a rug and pinned behind a bookcase at his home in Sutton, south London.

Crawford was given a life sentence with a minimum term of 26 years at the Old Bailey for murdering the 67-year-old.

He tricked the man's family and friends by using his mobile phone to send fake text messages while waiting for the money transfers to clear.

The two men had met on holiday in Thailand the year before, and Mr Ryan allowed Crawford to move into his spare room a month earlier because he had fallen on hard times.

Mr Ryan was hit over the head with a hammer or bat at least 12 times.

Crawford was extradited from Thailand in 2007 after contacting a local paper to offer to sell his story for £20,000.

Judge Stephen Kramer told Crawford: "What you did was callous and despicable.

"Mr Ryan had generously agreed you could stay in the spare room as you were penniless and while you found work.

"You killed the man who had given you a roof over your head. You abused his kindness."

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BBC News, 2011. Man jailed for 26 years for murder of holiday friend, 67 [Online] (Updated 5th Oct 2011)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/191422/Man-jailed-for-26-years-for-murder-of-holiday-friend-67 [Accessed 25th Apr 2014]

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