25 Apr 2013

Longley murder appeal dismissed

10:27 pm on 25 April 2013

A British man found guilty of murdering his New Zealand girlfriend has lost an appeal against the conviction.

Elliot Turner, 21, is serving a life sentence for murdering 17-year-old Emily Longley in May 2011.

He must serve at least 16 years before he can apply for parole.

On Wednesday, the Court of Appeal in London heard arguments on Turner's behalf before rejecting the challenge, PA reports.

The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Judge, said the court had reached the "clear conclusion" that the appeal should be dismissed. The court also threw out Turner's bid to have his sentence reduced.

The judges will give their reasons for their decision at a date to be announced.

Emily Longley arrived in England eight months before her death to study at college.

During his trial, Elliot Turner claimed that he acted in self-defence when Ms Longley attacked him and he grabbed her by the throat for five or six seconds, then woke up to find her dead in his bed at his home.

The prosecution said Turner used a pillow to smother her and then strangled her after she went back to his house to talk things over following a violent argument that night.

When sentencing Turner, Justice Dobbs said he had "bullied, harassed, threatened and assaulted" Ms Longley to control her as his "trophy" girlfriend.