South East Wales

Matalan murderer Andrew Saunders' appeals conviction

Lee Simmons and Zoe Morgan Image copyright Facebook
Image caption Lee Simmons and Zoe Morgan were found dead near Matalan on Cardiff's Queen Street

A man who stabbed a couple to death in Cardiff city centre has launched an appeal to overturn his conviction for murder.

Andrew Saunders, 21, was sentenced to life with a minimum term of 23 years after admitting the murders of Zoe Morgan, 21, and Lee Simmons, 33.

The couple were stabbed to death near the Queen Street Matalan store where they worked on 28 September 2016.

Saunders' barrister told London's Court of Appeal he had been mentally unwell.

Winston Roddick QC told the preliminary hearing Saunders suffered from an "adjustment disorder", which, if known at the time, would have allowed him to put forward a defence of diminished responsibility.

"A characteristic of adjustment disorder is that the sufferer will appear normal and indistinguishable from others," he told the judges.

Lady Justice Hallett said his appeal hearing should be listed as soon as a date is convenient, but no date has yet been set.

Saunders, of Castleton near Newport, bought knives and latex gloves in the days leading up to the double murder and searched Google for topics including "the easiest way to kill a person" and "how long do murderers serve in prison".

He was previously in a relationship with Miss Morgan for two years, but she ended it in July 2016.

Image copyright Matthew Horwood
Image caption Andrew Saunders pleaded guilty to murdering Zoe Morgan and Lee Simmons
Image copyright Family photo
Image caption Zoe Morgan's family described her as "beautiful, bright, fun and hard-working"

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