January 2012

Paedophile is found hanged in his cell

A convicted paedophile, whose partner is accused of murdering their children in Spain, has been found hanged in his cell at HMP Manchester.

Former TV psychic Martin Smith, 46, originally from North Shields, was jailed for 16 years in March 2011 for raping a girl aged under 16 in Cumbria.

Martin Smith, 45, who used hypnotism and violence to groom and sexually abuse a young girl, was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court.

He was found guilty in December 2010 of committing rape, attempted rape, indecency with a child and indecent assault between May 1995 and May 2004.

Smith repeatedly abused the girl, who is now in her 20s, from when she was seven years old.

She was hit and bullied until she complied with his demands.

Martin Smith and his wife Lianne who is in custody in Spain

His partner Lianne Smith is in custody accused of murdering their two children in Lloret de Mar, Spain.

Greater Manchester Police said his death was not thought to be suspicious.

A spokesman said his body was found in his cell on Monday evening.

Smith, who appeared on television as a medium five years ago on the Living Channel’s Most Haunted programme, was extradited to the UK from Spain in spring 2010.

After his return his daughter Rebecca, five, and Daniel, 11 months, were found dead in a hotel in Catalonia, north-east Spain.

The couple, who share the same name but are not related, left the UK for Spain with Rebecca. Daniel was born in Spain.

Smith was convicted at Manchester Crown Court of 11 counts of rape, attempted rape and indecent assault on his victim over a period of 10 years.

His trial was told he used hypnotism and violence to groom and sexually abuse his victim.

A Prison Service spokesman said the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman was investigating his death.

No date has been set yet for Lianne Smith’s murder trial in Spain, a spokeswoman for the Catalonia judiciary said.