Canadian jury considers fate of NZ murder-accused

  • 09/04/2016
Peter Beckett is accused of murdering wife, Laura Letts-Beckett, in Canada.
Peter Beckett is accused of murdering wife, Laura Letts-Beckett, in Canada.

A 14-person jury is deliberating in the trial of former Napier councillor Peter Beckett who is accused of murdering his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett, in August 2010 in Canada.

Ms Letts-Beckett drowned while fishing on Arrow Lake, British Columbia.

The Crown alleges Beckett, 59, murdered her by shoving her off the boat so he could profit from her inheritance, insurance money and their house.

Beckett claims Ms Letts-Beckett committed suicide or drowned accidentally.

He says she was suicidal before her death and points to a 2007 diary entry by Ms Letts-Beckett when she admitted to have thought about killing herself.

Beckett suggested to jurors Ms Letts-Beckett had suffered from depression for years before her death, brought about after being raped by a family friend as a child.

The trial has been running at the British Columbia Supreme Court for nearly three months.

NZN / Newshub.