OAP fails to win back cash from ex
THERE was nothing pensioner Alf McGuire wouldn't do for his true love - even if it meant continually dipping into his pocket.But when Diane Dellar broke his heart last year, the 67-year-old decided he wanted back the money he had spent romancing her.
THERE was nothing pensioner Alf McGuire wouldn't do for his true love - even if it meant continually dipping into his pocket.
But when Diane Dellar broke his heart last year, the 67-year-old decided he wanted back the money he had spent romancing her.
Mr McGuire, a retired labourer, tried to sue Ms Dellar, 53, for £1,200 - the cash he claimed he had wasted buying groceries, alcohol and cigarettes for her, taking her out to restaurants and on holidays and day trips.
But yesterday a judge took less than 20 minutes to throw out the case and described it as one of the most “totally inappropriate” matters he had ever dealt with.
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Ms Dellar, 53, wept as District Judge Ian Evans delivered his verdict at Ipswich County Court yesterday.
Mr McGuire, a divorced grandfather who was brought up in Paisley, Scotland, dated Ms Dellar for three-and-a-half years after meeting her through a lonely hearts advert he placed in a local free newspaper.
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The couple, who both live in Ipswich, had a tempestuous relationship and split up several times before Ms Dellar finally decided to leave him for good last February because she was fed up with his possessive behaviour and felt they were drifting apart.
She was shocked when she received a court letter, stating that he was demanding she repay the £1,200 he had spent in the previous year.
Grandmother Ms Dellar refused to pay him a penny, claiming that she had always paid her own way, spent money on presents for him and cooked him meals during their relationship.
The couple sat glaring at each other in a courtroom yesterday as Judge Evans attempted to resolve the case.
Mr McGuire, a part-time cleaner who walks with a limp, claimed Ms Dellar had been repeatedly unfaithful to him and outlined a series of incidents which he claimed made him suspicious that she was seeing other men.
He said: “When you love someone and take them out like I did, I don't expect to get betrayed and lied to, cheated on and deceived.”
But Mr McGuire, who lives with his grown-up son, admitted in court that he had spent money on Ms Dellar of his “own free will” and had not loaned it to her.
Judge Evans then decided he would throw out Mr McGuire's case without hearing what Ms Dellar had to say.
He told Mr McGuire: “The case raises no legal issues and it is one of the most misconceived cases I have ever had the misfortune of dealing with. It should never have got here. It is totally inappropriate.”
“It is regrettable that such private matters have been aired in public. If I had power to make orders for costs, I would do so because it has been a complete waste of time.”
The judge said he did not wish to cause Ms Dellar further stress by making her give evidence, but she insisted she still wanted her say in court, accusing Mr McGuire of wrecking her life.
She claimed the stress he had put her under had led to being put on six different types of medication and being too scared to leave her ground floor flat.
She also insisted that she had never been unfaithful to Mr McGuire and shouted across at him: “My life has been ruined because of you. I don't care what you think. I never saw anyone else. You were the one who kept talking about how your ex-wife left you for someone else.”
Ms Dellar told the court how she had once asked Mr McGuire how he felt about settling down with her. He replied that he was not interested and told that she just had to “live with” their current arrangement.
She then produced a copy of the newspaper containing Mr McGuire's lonely hearts and hurled it at him before storming out of court in tears.
Ms Dellar refused to comment as she was led away from court supported by her grown-up son and daughter.
Earlier she accused Mr McGuire of being “tight-fisted” and claimed he only took the court action against her to “torment her”.
She added: “It's a joke to say he spent £1,200 on me in one year. He didn't even spend that much in our three years together.
“I used to feed him when he came round to mine, but I'd never dream of going to a solicitor to ask him to pay up.”
Mr McGuire, of Shamrock Avenue, was unrepentant outside court. He said: “I don't regret bringing the case at all. It is half what I expected anyway. Several people told me that I didn't have a bat in hell's chance of winning.
“The reason I decided to go to court was not out of sour grapes, revenge, jealousy or anger. It was done out of heartache and sorrow.
“I have not got a lot of money. The reason I spent it on her was that I was in love with her. I was devoted to her.
“I would have done anything for her - but all she did was betray my trust and loyalty and betray my love.”