John McAreavey renews appeal into Michaela's death

He has returned to the holiday island of Mauritius where his wife was killed

John McAreavey renews appeal into Michaela's death

John McAreavey (far right) returns to Mauritius | Image via @john_mcareavey on Twitter

The widower of Michaela McAreavey has returned to the holiday island where she died six years ago, to make a fresh appeal for help in catching her killer.

John McAreavey had meetings with Mauritius police, prosecutors and the Prime Minister on Monday.

Mr McAreavey says "progress" was made in the meetings.

He has also offered a €50,000 reward to help catch his wife's killer.

Mrs McAreavey (27) from Tyrone was killed in her room at the Legends Hotel on her honeymoon on January 10th, 2011.

Two men who had previously worked at the resort were acquitted of the crime in 2012, after an eight week trial.

A new police team was tasked to to carry out a fresh investigation into the murder in 2013, headed up by three senior officers on the island.

Making an emotional public appeal following the "very painful" journey, Mr McAreavey said he felt betrayed by the Mauritian justice authorities, accusing them of inaction in the stalled investigation.

Sitting with his sister Claire and Mrs McAreavey's brother Mark, Mr McAreavey offered the reward to anyone who provides information that leads to the successful prosecution of the killer or killers.

"Over the past six-and-a-half years our resolve to win justice for Michaela remains undiminished," he said.

"We believe we have given the Mauritian authorities every chance to deliver on their very public promise that justice would be done.

"However, until this visit, the reality falls far short of that and as the years have passed it appears that the unofficial policy has become one of 'out of sight, out of mind'."

John McAreavey speaking to Newstalk in 2014 | Image: YouTube/Newstalk

He asked for the help of "those who may know something, but have not yet come forward for whatever reason".

Describing the "kindness and sympathy" of the Mauritian people, he directly appealed to them "to come forward with any piece of information, no matter how small".

"As time marches on this could be our final chance to obtain justice for Michaela, but we can't do it alone," he said.

"Everything's fine until something goes wrong"

While Mr McAreavey told The Pat Kenny Show here on Newstalk in 2014 that the new investigation was making progress.

He claimed while there was no such incident like this in the resort before, other crimes had taken place.

"There was a crime ring going on in the hotel for about four or five years...petty theft from the hotel staff.

"And obviously for the PR of a hotel you never want that to get out so they would just deal with it by, if they found employees responsible, they would just ask them to leave so then it wouldn't be on their records that somebody had got sacked for stealing."

On the acquittal of the two men, Mr McAreavey said: "I suppose you could look at the defence team and say 'they did a really good job' - the way they went about their business was highly questionable, but at the end of the day they got their two clients off".

The order of service for Michaela McAreavey's funeral mass at St Malachy's Church outside Ballygawley in 2011 | Image: pool pic

And he said it was only when something went wrong he realised he was on his own: "It's very hard for Irish people to kind of understand because you automatically judge everything by your own systems.

"And we obviously live in a highly-developed country - it's not like that in Mauritius.

"Whenever people are looking at destinations for honeymoons and they're thinking of the paradise, you think of places like Mauritius because you see these great hotels - but the reality is it's in a very under-developed country. And you're basically just in a big resort within that country.

"You're there in the resort and that's it - everything's fine until something goes wrong and when something goes wrong you are on your own.

"It was a very hard lesson to learn".

Additional reporting: IRN