News, Culture & Society

Married teacher who wed Carribean woman avoids jail for bigamy 

Bigamist teacher, 62, married woman, 33, during a whirlwind Carribean romance but failed to tell her he had another wife in the UK until she found his letters nearly a decade later

  • Cecil Sayer met the woman in 2006 while teaching in the Dominican Republic
  • They married later that year, with the woman completely unaware of first wife
  • Sayer and his British wife were ‘fully separated’ but had not filed divorce papers
  • He was sentenced to 8 months in jail, suspended for a year, at Hull Crown Court

A teacher who married a Caribbean woman nearly half his age while working abroad failed to tell her that he already had a wife back in Britain, a court heard.

Cecil Sayer, now 75, met the woman in 2006 while he was teaching English in the Dominican Republic and she was working as a kitchen assistant at the same school.

They quickly fell in love, which the woman described as ‘being romanced by the defendant’, Hull Crown Court heard.

Stephen Welch, prosecuting, said the mother-of-two ‘eventually agreed to marry him’, and a wedding took place in the Dominican Republic in December that year.

But although Sayer was ‘fully separated’ from his British wife, they had not completed the divorce paperwork and he was still legally married.

Cecil Sayer (pictured outside Hull Crown Court) was sentenced to eight months in jail, suspended for 12 months, and was also ordered to pay £750 prosecution costs

The court heard that Sayer did not formally complete his divorce from his first wife until April 2008.

With his Dominican bride, now 46, still unaware of Sayer’s previous marriage, he went to work in China, where she and her two children followed him.  

Sayer then moved to Vietnam, where he suffered a stroke, which left him with partial paralysis down his right side and unable to walk.

He returned to the Dominican Republic, where his second wife ‘continued to live with him and care for him’.

Sayer then said he wanted to travel back to the UK ‘because of his financial circumstances’.

But when he applied for a visa, he made no mention of his marriage to the Dominican, describing her as his ‘carer’.

Mr Welch said: ‘The prosecution say the reason for his deception was because the defendant didn’t want the fact this wedding was bigamy to be uncovered.’

The woman was ‘challenged’ on arrival in the UK on May 17, 2011, although she was allowed to stay with Sayer.  

The couple quickly fell in love, which the woman described as 'being romanced by the defendant', Hull Crown Court (pictured) heard

The couple quickly fell in love, which the woman described as ‘being romanced by the defendant’, Hull Crown Court (pictured) heard

Although both parties agreed the relationship had begun to deteriorate, the woman was given further leave to remain between August 2012 and August 2018.

During this period, the Dominican bride also discovered ‘correspondence’ revealing Sayer’s previous marriage. She moved out of the family home on June 4, 2016.

In police interview, Sayer, of Bridlington, admitted his wrongdoing and later pleaded guilty to bigamy and assisting a breach of immigration law.  

Antony Farrell, mitigating, said he was remorseful and has been ‘a hard-working man all his life’.

Sentencing Sayer, Judge Paul Watson told him: ‘Mr Sayer, you come before this court at the age of 75. No previous convictions at all.

‘You led a hard-working, decent, respectable life and it’s a great shame at your age you have found yourself before the Crown court charged with, on the face of it, serious offences.

‘When I first looked at this case I thought an immediate custodial sentence was unavoidable, but having read a little more I determined this was not a case where you were deceiving your first wife or in any way leading a double life.’

Sayer was sentenced to eight months in jail, suspended for 12 months, and was also ordered to pay £750 prosecution costs within six months.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


Comments are closed.