Thursday May 2, 2013 : BRIT POKER PRO DESTINED FOR A U.S. JAIL
Bebb-Jones convicted of murdering his wife 16 years ago
Our readers may recall the case of Marcus Bebb-Jones, a British poker champ accused of murdering his wife Sabrina,then aged 31 in 1997 whilst in the United States.
Her skull was found in a Colorado national park in 2004, and investigations led to the arrest of the poker pro at his home in the UK in 2009 after US authorities requested the assistance of the British police.
Extradited to the United States Bebb-Jones was convicted of murder and was this week sentenced to 20 years imprisonment by a court in Colorado, according to a statement from the Colorado Judicial Department. The investigations leading to the trial involved the extensive use of forensic science, prosecutors disclosed.
Bebb-Jones originally denied the charge, but earlier this year entered a guilty plea, claiming the murder was carried out in a fit of rage, and that he had concealed the body of his wife to avoid detection and traumatising the couple's young son.
US prosecutors claimed that after killing his wife, the Briton fled to Las Vegas where he charged thousands of pounds on his wife’s credit cards on prostitutes, designer clothes and a Ferrari rental before attempting to kill himself. He then fled back to Britain with his son, where he was subsequently arrested.
Bebb-Jones was a well-known player on the UK live poker tournament circuit, at one time winning GBP 90,000 in the 2007 Grosvenor Grand Prix.
"I didn’t intentionally kill Sabrina, but what I did do was wrong and I ask for your forgiveness," Bebb-Jones told his wife’s family at the sentencing hearing.
The family were unimpressed, with Sabrina's brother Mike Dang appealing to the judge to impose the maximum sentence of 20 years behind bars.
"This terrible man. He took her life, he took our grandson away and our daughter for no reason,” he said, reading a statement from his father.