They accused me of murdering my partner

HAPPY COUPLE Alan Halls and Pat Wood.
HAPPY COUPLE Alan Halls and Pat Wood.

A woman from Liversedge has spoken of her trauma after she was accused of killing her partner at their Spanish home.

Pat Wood and her partner Alan Halls, 63, were at their apartment in Torremolinos, Malaga, when he collapsed with a blood clot in his lung and died.

But after Pat called a friend for help, she said police arrived and accused her of killing him.

Pat, of Ripley Road, said: “Six policemen with truncheons were guarding his body. If I tried to move they said, ‘no, scene of crime’. They pushed me back on the sofa a few times. They put two police cars across the drive so nobody in the complex could come or go.

“Men in white arrived and started taking pictures. They found some tablets and thought I had given him an overdose.

“I was hysterical. It was a nightmare – I thought it couldn’t be real. I didn’t know what was going on. It hadn’t sunk in that he had died and all this was happening.”

Alan died on November 1, but Pat stayed on in Spain, where the couple have spent their winters for the last few years and has only just returned to Britain. She is now planning a memorial service here for Alan, as few people could attend his funeral in Spain.

She said the treatment she received at the hands of the Spanish authorities was appalling and she wanted people to know what a horrendous ordeal she had been through.

She said: “They took his body away and when I asked where it was they just shrugged their shoulders.

“We didn’t know where it was for three days. The consulate found out the area he had been taken to – his body was in a sealed laboratory under police guard.

“When I got there they told me they had Alan’s possessions, but he didn’t have any. They gave me some things but they belonged to someone else. That was the final insult.”

Pat said a forensic doctor revealed that Alan had died from natural causes – a blood clot which could have been prevented by an injection of warfarin.

She said she had come home to hold a memorial service for Alan – but was still facing a fight with the Spanish government over his estate. She said: “As soon as a death is registered, all Spanish bank accounts are frozen, even if they are half in my name. I have to pay 49,000 euro in inheritance tax before I can do anything with the estate.

“Three Spanish solicitors told me to pretend he is alive for a few years to get around the inheritance tax but I said that was breaking the law. I wonder how many people in the same position have walked away. ”

See p43 for a tribute to Alan and details of his memorial service.