‘We want justice for Claire’

Pat and Ray Martin of Sutton, whose daughter Claire was murdered in Italy.
Pat and Ray Martin of Sutton, whose daughter Claire was murdered in Italy.

The devastated family of a Sutton woman who died in Italy from multiple stab wounds have launched an appeal to raise the cash they need to try and prove that she was murdered.

Pat and Ray Martin have been fighting to find out what happened to their beloved daughter Claire (30) ever since she died in March 2012 while living in Italy with her partner and baby son.

They say they have ‘come up against a wall of silence and misinformation’ ever since the tragic events occurred and do definitely not believe that the suicide verdict officially recorded in Italy is correct.

Now, in an attempt to get her case re-examined by the Italian authorities, the Martins are trying to raise thousands of pounds in order to get all of the forensic documents and written evidence about Claire’s death translated into English and examined by an independent forensic expert.

However their case is dependent on whether the judge at a hearing at the end of April decides to accept the ‘Deed of Objection’ the family’s lawyer lodged against the suicide verdict.

They fear that without ‘new and decisive evidence’ the judge will only pay lip service to the objections and archive the case - meaning it could not be re-opened.

Said Claire’s mum Pat, of Mansfield Road, Sutton: “We are setting ourselves up for the worst because it’s been the worst all the time.

“We don’t really know who we can trust.

“This is an injustice to our daughter’s name.”

Claire suffered up to 24 stab wounds to the neck and drowned in her own blood as it filled her lungs following the horrific incident in the small village where she was living near Naples.

The Martins say that the investigations carried out by the Italian authorities were inadequate right from the start and they have continually struggled to find out anything about the case.

But they will not give up the fight to find out what really happened to Claire and are hoping that people will rally round and help them raise the thousands of pounds needed to get the case examined by experts and hopefully re-opened by the Italian authorities.

Some forensic documents have been translated at a cost of £4,592, with money donated by the organisation Missing Abroad, operated by The Lucie Blackman Trust, but more cash is needed to pay for an expert to look at these and to translate the remaining written evidence.

The Martins have written a letter to influential people asking for help and have set up a campaign webpage at mydonate.bt.com/events/justiceforclaire/112875.

In their letter, Pat, Ray and son Paul say: “Some months back we were advised not to aim too high and that we may never know who killed Claire, but if we at least prove that Claire was murdered it would mean so much to us and to our grandson.”

Added Pat: “Everyone has their own fight and my fight is to clear Claire’s name, which has been blackened by the Italian authorities, and to find out what actually happened and who was responsible.”