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new focus Charity set up in memory of tragic Michaela McAreavey to cease activities after 10 years

Michaela's husband, John, said the focus will now shift to a “new initiative,” which will “create a tangible and permanent memory to Michaela’s spirit

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John and Michaela pictured on their wedding day in December 2010

John and Michaela pictured on their wedding day in December 2010

John and Michaela pictured on their wedding day in December 2010

A charity set up in memory of murdered Tyrone woman Michaela McAreavey is ceasing activities after ten years.

The Michaela Foundation was set up in 2011 following the death of the 27-year-old while on her honeymoon in Mauritius.

Today, her husband John, Chairman of the foundation, released a statement saying that “The activities of Michaela Foundation will cease from this year.”

Mr McAreavey, who recently welcomed his first child with his second wife Tara, said the charity had “achieved an enormous amount” in the past 10 years and that it “is time to bring a close to this wonderful chapter in our lives.”

He said the focus will now shift to a “new initiative,” which will “create a tangible and permanent memory to Michaela’s spirit and to the incredible spirit of Michaela Foundation.”

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John and Michaela McAreavey at the Giant's Causeway in Co Antrim

John and Michaela McAreavey at the Giant's Causeway in Co Antrim

John and Michaela McAreavey at the Giant's Causeway in Co Antrim

The foundation was set up to “commemorate the values that Michaela held dear in her life,” he added.

“It was clear that the simple way in which Michaela lived her life resonated with many people. Michaela was fun, confident and had an enriching relationship with God. She led a ‘Life Without Limits.’

In 10 years, the Foundation hosted almost 120 summer camps throughout every province in Ireland and worked with 10,000 young people, promoting its values. Last year’s summer camps were cancelled due to Covid-19.

Mrs McAreavey, the daughter of former Tyrone manager Mickey Harte, was found strangled in the bath of her hotel suite after returning alone to her room at the former Legends Hotel in Grand Gaube, Mauritius.

Two hotel workers, Avinash Treebhoowoon and Sandip Moneea, were charged with the murder but were later acquitted.

In December last year, it was revealed that Mauritian police have officially closed the latest probe into the murder.

An investigation into the killing announced in August 2020 found no fresh evidence to warrant a new trial or a retrial before a jury, the Mauritian Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Office told the publication.

"We have been informed by the Commissioner of Police that the police has closed its inquiry into the killing of Michaela Harte as no fresh evidence has been detected by the new inquiry which could have warranted a reopening/retrial of the case before a jury," said Mehdi Manrakhan, a senior assistant to the DPP.

Mr Manrakhan was the solicitor who represented the Mauritian state in the 2012 trial of two hotel workers who were charged and later acquitted of the murder.

"The DPP has no further comments to make in the circumstances," he added.

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