SICK ghouls who accessed CCTV of Emiliano Sala’s dead body have been jailed for a total of 19 months.
Christopher Ashford, 62, and Sherry Bray, 49, watched the Cardiff City footballer’s post-mortem six times in 24 hours after he died in a devastating plane crash.
They had illegally accessed CCTV at Bournemouth Mortuary, with images they took from the autopsy later leaked on Instagram – although there is no suggestion the pair posted the picture.
Mum-of-two Bray was the director of a million pound CCTV company in nearby Chippenham and held a contract to monitor the cameras.
She was today jailed for 14 months, while Ashford was caged for five months at Swindon Crown Court after both admitted three counts of securing unauthorised access to computer material.
Bray also admitted perverting the course of public justice by instructing grandfather-of-four Ashford to “delete your pics” on February 12.
She was also pleaded guilty to deleting the post-mortem cameras from the live feed camera facility and deleting the post-mortem image of Sala from her mobile phone.
‘WICKED AND EVIL’
Sentencing, Judge Peter Crabtree said: “You were both driven by morbid curiosity.
“You have both abused your positions in quite an appalling way.”
Sala’s sister Romina previously slammed the pair in an emotional victim impact statement read to the court.
She said: “I have seen photos of Emiliano’s body leaked on Instagram, and I cannot believe there are people so wicked and evil who could do that.
“I tried to keep images off social networks. My mother could not see those horrible photos.
“I was sad as people were making jokes about it.I’ll never erase the images from my head. My brother and mother can never forget about this.”
She added: “It’s hard for me to live with this image.”
‘IS NOTHING SACRED?’
The court was told Sala’s body was recovered on February 6 and a post-mortem examination took place at Bournemouth Borough Mortuary the following day.
Bray and Ashford accessed footage of the procedure being conducted and replayed it several times.
Shen then took a picture of it on her mobile phone and sent it to a family member on Facebook Messenger, leading to it being widely shared on social media.
After realising that police were investigating, Bray deleted the file from her phone and asked Ashford to do the same.
Evidence from Bray’s phone also revealed that she had taken a picture of another body in the mortuary, a man called Andrew Latchem who had previously died in non-suspicious circumstances.
His son Richard Latcham directed his words to Bray in his statement, saying: “Is nothing sacred? Why would you do such a thing? Such a cruel and unnecessary act.”
Argentina international Sala died when the plane taking him to Cardiff crashed into the English Channel on January 21.
The striker had signed for the Welsh club from French side Nantes for £15m just hours earlier and was set to meet his new teammates the next day.
His body was recovered on February 6 and a post-mortem examination took place at Bournemouth Mortuary the following day.
But a week later, police were alerted to an image on Twitter apparently showing his remains during the examination.
The body of pilot David Ibbotson has never been found.
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It later emerged the pilot from Scunthorpe, N. Lincs, was colour blind and not qualified to fly at night.
The flight had been due to set off from Nantes airport at 9am local time January 21 but it was postponed until 7pm.
Air Accident Investigation Branch officials previously confirmed they were probing whether the flight chartered by Sala’s agent was legal.