Man who murdered wife by throwing petrol on her and setting her on fire is jailed for life

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A man who murdered his wife and a mother of six by setting her on fire has been jailed for life.

Thomas Rainey, 61, threw a bucket of petrol over mother-of-six Katrina Rainey, 53, and set her on fire as she prepared to leave for work. She was treated at the scene by her children who attempted to cover her with wet towels.

Mrs Rainey was leaving for work and opened her car door when she was covered with petrol and then set on fire. She was unable to get out of the car due to her seatbelt being fastened, so instead kept "hitting the horn and screaming".

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Katrina, 53, suffered burns to 90% of her body in the "horrific" attack and survived  long enough to tell police what had happened. She claimed it was an act of revenge by her husband because of their pending divorce.

Mrs Rainey later died in hospital of her injuries.

On Wednesday, (July 6) Thomas Rainey, of County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, was sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty to her murder. He must serve a minimum of 18 years in prison before being eligible for release.

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Mr Justice O’Hara, who delivered the sentence at Belfast Crown Court on Wednesday, said "given the horror of what he did to his wife it is the least he deserves". The court heard the incident took place at the family home in October 2021.

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