Mullanys' honeymoon murderer shot and captured in Antigua

Avie Howell Image copyright Antigua Police
Image caption Avie Howell is serving a life sentence for the murders

A man serving a life sentence for the murder of a couple from south Wales on their honeymoon in Antigua has been shot and recaptured by police.

Avie Howell was shot by officers and is in hospital, a spokesman for Antigua police said.

He escaped prison with another inmate on Thursday.

Howell and Kaniel Martin shot Ben and Catherine Mullany, from Pontardawe, in July 2008. Mrs Mullany died instantly, and her husband died later in Swansea.

Police confronted Howell on Friday after a large scale search.

Reports on the island say he was hit in the knee by gunfire.

The two convicts had fled on Thursday after scaling a 30ft (9m) wall.

Acting superintendent of HMP Prison Antigua Alfred David and Corporal Frankie Thomas, spokesman for Antigua police, both confirmed Howell had been caught.

"During the incident he was shot by the police following a confrontation, and he is in hospital," said Cpl Thomas.

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Media captionAvie Howell was shot by police during a confrontation after his escape

The other man, who is facing fraud charges, is still at large.

News of the capture was welcomed by families of the late Mr and Mrs Mullany.

Ben Mullany's mother, Marilyn, said: "We are very relieved that he was caught. We were very concerned and upset when we heard he had escaped.

"Our fear was that he might leave the island and not only evade justice, but end up hurting someone else."

Howell and Martin were convicted of killing Mr and Mrs Mullany in 2011.

The couple, who were both 31, were shot in the head at their luxury hotel on the island and their killers made off with their mobiles, a cheap digital camera and a handful of cash.

They had married just two weeks before at St John's The Evangelist Church in Cilybebyll.

Both defendants were also convicted of shooting an island shopkeeper, and handed a life term each.

In January 2013 Howell was given another four-year term for a burglary in which cash and mobiles were stolen at a home on Antigua just the month before he murdered Mr and Mrs Mullany.

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