Prison for bigamy husband
- Credit: Alastair Johnstone/SWNS.com
A WIFE had her life ‘destroyed’ by her ‘cruel’ husband, after learning he led a double life for years and illegally married another woman.
Adrian Linham, aged 43, astonished magistrates with his ‘incredible deception’ that his wife of seven years Elizabeth Linham only discovered when contacted by her Nailsea-based mother-in-law, and saw pictures of her husband with another bride on Facebook.
He divorced in 2006 and married Mrs Linham one year later and they lived together in Failand.
But he created a web of lies and married Hayley Totterdell on May 27, 2014, despite being aware he was legally married to Mrs Linham.
Miss Totterdell did not know he was married when they tied the knot in Mexico, however North Somerset Courthouse was told they remain together at their Bristol home in Hicks Common Road.
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Mrs Linham, in a statement read in court, said: “He has destroyed the past seven years of my life and I never want to see him again.
“Everything we had has been ruined by his cruel behaviour and taking advantage of my generosity.
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“I find it very difficult to trust anyone. I will never marry again.
“I still have loads of tears to shed and I don’t think I could tell anyone I love them again.
“I feel devastated and embarrassed to be associated with him and humiliated.
“I can’t understand what I did that was so bad that he felt he could humiliate me. If he wanted a divorce, why not just tell me?”
She met Linham at his brother’s wedding in 2000 and they married at Rookery Manor in Somerset seven years later.
But he spent increasingly little time at home, saying he had a new job in Bangor. However, he was actually meeting up with Miss Totterdell and they were in a three-year relationship before the sham wedding.
In 2013, Mrs Linham lost a child during pregnancy and in her statement said: “I now realise the time I became pregnant, he was already engaged and it was an outcome that suited him.”
The 37-year-old only learnt of the deceit when her mother-in-law wrote to her and compassionately said she hoped her divorce to Linham and his subsequent marriage to Miss Totterdell had not upset her. A distraught Mrs Linham then discovered pictures on Facebook of her husband and his new bride on the same Mexican beach they went on honeymoon to years before.
Sue Baker, defending, said Linham had ‘put the cart before the horse’ by marrying a second woman before seeking a divorce.
Sentencing Linham, chair of the bench Peter Searle said: “There is no doubt this is the most incredible deception and you have gone to the most incredible lengths.
“We’ve heard Elizabeth Linham is on anti-depressants, she is in debt, there’s no remorse (from the defendant), her trust in men and relationships has been destroyed, she has been humiliated, can’t sleep and has nightmares.”
Mr Linham pleaded guilty to one count of bigamy and was jailed for 18 weeks. He must pay £1,000 compensation to Mrs Linham, £85 costs and £80 victim surcharge.
Speaking afterwards, she said: “It’s just been a total nightmare. I remember saying this is the kind of thing you’d read about in the newspaper.”