Longford man jailed for murder of Scottish woman

A Co Longford man was jailed for life today for raping and murdering a mother of three in Dundee last year.

A Co Longford man was jailed for life today for raping and murdering a mother of three in Dundee last year.

Patrick Rae (41) was ordered to spend at least 20 years behind bars after a jury found him guilty of the murder of Dundee woman, Mary McLaren in February 2010.

In handing down the sentence at Edinburgh High Court today, Lord Tyre said Rae had shown no compassion for his victim whom he had met at Fat Sam’s nightclub on February 24 2010.

“You preyed on a woman who...by all accounts was already the worse for drink. You viciously raped and strangled her, leaving her body to be found many days later,” he said.

Family members of Mrs McLaren, of Rowantree Crescent, Dundee, huddled together holding hands before shouting “yes” as the jury’s majority verdict was read out in court.

As Rae was led from the dock to begin his life sentence, a family impact statement was read out, telling of how the popular mother had been deprived of seeing her grandchild being born.

“Today’s verdict does not bring Mary back to us. It doesn’t take away the pain or the grief that we feel for our loss of Mary. No sentence will stop the nightmares that we all have thinking about how Mary must have suffered at the hands of this man. We miss Mary. We always will. She was at the heart of this family when she was with us and remains there now. She loved us. We love her still and cannot believe that she is no longer with us.

“Patrick Rae has robbed us of a much–loved and loving daughter, wife and mother. He also denied Mary the chance of holding the grandchild that she was so looking forward to welcoming into the world. We can only hope that Mary is at peace now.”

Rae was caught after Tayside Police launched a manhunt shortly after Mrs McLaren disappeared during the early hours of February 25 last year. She had spent much of the evening in the company of her sister, Michelle Rodger at Fat Sam’s nightclub where she met Mr Rae. CCTV images showed Rae dancing with Mrs McLaren before leaving the nightclub on the night she vanished.

Mrs McLaren’s body was found two weeks later hidden in undergrowth close to the Ladywell roundabout in Dundee.

Postmortem results revealed she had been strangled and assaulted.

The court heard Rae’s semen had been detected on the body and distinctive pollen from shrubbery where Mrs McLaren’s body was later found also linked Rae to the crime scene.

Rae, who denied the charges claimed Mrs McLaren consented to sex in the club and that she had been alive and well when he left her near the roundabout.