An American man has been sentenced to death by hanging in Malaysia for murdering his ex-wife so that he could be with his new Filipina bride.
Gerald Wayne Mickelson, aged 63, was convicted today (Tuesday, September 4) of strangling his wife Guilda in Kuala Lumpur in November 2016.
The couple, who were from Massachusetts, had been in Malaysia for Mickelson’s telecommunications job and had decided to separate after 30 years together.
His lawyer claims he was acting in self-defence when he hit 62-year-old Guilda on the head and strangled her after an argument about his plans to move to the Philippines with his new wife.
However, a judge rejected this claim of self-defence and sentenced him to death. His Filipino bride, who has not been named, wept in the public gallery.
Wayne was charged under Section 302 of the Penal Code which provides for death by hanging upon conviction.
Speaking after the sentencing, Mickelson’s lawyer said he was planning to file an appeal.
According to a report in the New Straits Times, prosecutor Azeezi Nordin told the court today: “The couple had been married for 30 years, but were still staying together after their divorce.
“During the investigation, the accused said he got into an argument his ex-wife who did not allow him to move to the Philippines.
“In their report, pathologists said that they found a fracture on the deceased’s head due to blunt force trauma.
“The deceased’s hyoid bone (located near the neck) was also broken, which proved that she was manually strangled by the accused.”
Mickelson’s defence pointed out that rather than fleeing the scene of the killing, he had called for help.
The duty manager of the building where it took place, who answered his call, said he recalled finding him sitting on a bed and telling him: “I killed her,” when he arrived.
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