Former Gulf News editor-at-large, Francis Matthew, pictured at the Dubai Press Club in 2009. Amy Leang - The National

A former newspaper editor who was convicted of bludgeoning his wife to death with a hammer has had his sentence extended to 15 years.

Francis Matthew, who is in his early sixties, killed his wife Jane at their home in Dubai on 4 July last year.

The ex-editor of the English-language paper Gulf News was found guilty of the killing in March and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

He had faced the possibility of the death penalty for the killing.

His lawyers and prosecutors both lodged appeals against the sentence.

Peter Manning, Jane Matthew’s brother, welcomed the latest ruling, saying the lesser sentence would have been a “terrible injustice”.

The body of the 62-year-old woman was discovered with a severe head wound.

Matthew initially claimed his wife of more than 30 years had been killed by burglars.

He later changed his story and allegedly told police the couple – who were prominent members of the UAE’s large British expatriate community – had argued over financial debts.

According to a police report, he claimed his wife pushed him during the argument and he then got a hammer, followed her into the bedroom and struck her twice in the head.

Matthew had served as the editor of Gulf News from 1995 to 2005 before rising to become editor-at-large at the newspaper.

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