Ex lover cleared of killing

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A MAN accused of plotting to murder a teenage mum who was stabbed to death and dumped in a canal has been acquitted by jurors of planning the killing.

Laura Wilson, aged 17, was pulled from the water near Steel Street, Rotherham, last October after allegedly ‘shaming’ two Asian men by telling their relatives she’d had sexual relationships with both.

Ishaq Hussain, 22, of Ferham Road, Holmes, Rotherham, denied helping to organise the killing along with Ashtiaq Asghar, 18, of Holmes Lane, who has admitted murder.

Following almost 10 hours of deliberations, the jury of eight women and four men acquitted Hussain of murder by unanimous verdict.

The verdict was met with an angry reaction by members of her family.

Her elder sister, Sarah, who gave evidence during the trial, broke down in tears in the public gallery and was comforted by her mother Margaret.

Jurors were told a number of text messages were exchanged between Hussain and Asghar in the days before Laura vanished.

One referred to buying a ‘shooter’, while another mentioned sending someone ‘straight to hell’.

But call centre worker Hussain, the father of Laura’s daughter, told the court he was unaware of any plan to kill her.

Det Supt Mick Mason said: “One man has been convicted of Laura’s murder and we’re satisfied that all available evidence was put before a jury.

“This has been a traumatic time for Laura’s family and friends. Her killer will face a lengthy sentence and we hope they can now move on with the rest of their lives.”

Asghar will be sentenced at Sheffield crown court later this month.