Andrew Innes loses final appeal against murdering mum and daughter

The bodies of Bennylyn Burke and Jellica were found under the floorboards of Innes' kitchen floor in Dundee.

Andrew Innes loses final appeal against murdering Bennylyn Burke and her daughter Jellica STV News

A man who killed a woman and her daughter and then buried them under his home in Dundee has lost his bid to overturn his conviction and sentence.

Andrew Innes was sentenced to life in prison in February for the murders of Bennylyn Burke, 25, and two-year-old Jellica in 2021.

Appeal judges refused the 53-year-old’s second application to appeal, effectively ending the case, although he could still further appeal to the Criminal Cases Review Commission or the UK Supreme Court.

He was not present in court on Tuesday for the decision to refuse the application.

Andrew Innes.STV News

During the trial, Innes admitted killing Bennylyn and Jellica but denied murder, lodging a special defence of lacking criminal responsibility and diminished responsibility.

But judge Lord Beckett told the jury there had been no evidence to show that Innes had been suffering from mental impairment.

As a result, he instructed them to find Innes guilty of murdering Bennylyn and Jellica. A jury found Innes guilty on all counts after deliberating for less than three hours.

Innes was also found guilty of sexually abusing Jellica and raping another child at his home on Troon Avenue in Dundee between February 20 and March 5, 2021.

He was sentenced to life and told to serve a minimum of 36 years in jail before being considered for parole.

Last month, a judge ruled there were no arguable grounds for Innes’ appeal against his conviction and jail term to proceed.

An appeal against that refusal, at what is known as the second sift stage, was denied on Tuesday.

Bennylyn had travelled from Bristol to Dundee with Innes after meeting him online, she had hoped to build a new life in the city.

Bennylyn’s friends and family say all she wanted in life was “to love and to be loved”.

She believed such an opportunity for romance had arisen with a man from Dundee she met on an online dating forum tailored for the Filipino community.

But she was lured north from Somerset, in the south-west of England, under false pretences. The man she had been speaking to had no interest in forging a relationship with Bennylyn.

Innes was planning to kill her. She was reported missing in Bristol, but by that time both Bennylyn and Jellica were already dead.

Bennylyn’s family travelled to Scotland from the Philippines for the trial. They were in court every day to hear the harrowing evidence of what happened to Bennylyn and Jellica.

Susan Cueva, of the Kanlungan Filipino Consortium, told STV News earlier this year: “Men like Andrew Innes are predators. They go after vulnerable women like Bennylyn because they know they have power over them and they can control them.

“I think that the plan of this kind of man is to really harm women and girls like Bennylyn and Jellica because they are vulnerable – they want to wield power and control over them – and they commit crimes that should not be accepted in society.

“I think it’s important that justice is served in this case and that Andrew Innes is put behind bars forever so that he cannot harm any other women and children in the future.”

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