A maximum life sentence would not be sufficient punishment for a gay pharmacist who murdered his wife, her family has said.

Relatives of Jessica Patel described her as "beautiful both on the inside and out" following the conviction of her husband, Mitesh Patel, at Teesside Crown Court.

In a statement released through Cleveland Police, they said: "The man we welcomed into our family, who promised to look after and protect her, betrayed her in every sense of the word, cheating her of her dreams, robbing her of her life and robbing us of her.

"No one in this world has the right to take someone else's life.

"Although even a maximum life sentence is not punishment enough, we are relieved at the outcome of the trial and this will help to bring us a little peace."

The family also described the devastating impact of the death in May, saying: "Jessica was beautiful both on the inside and out.

"Her soul was pure, her heart ever so kind and the love and generosity she afforded to everyone in her life was second to none.

"All we really want is to have Jessica back in our lives - something we will never get but we hope now she is finally at peace."

Following Patel's conviction, Detective Chief Inspector Matt Murphy-King, of Cleveland Police, told how the killer had gone as far as staging the murder scene in an attempt to make it appear as though his wife had died during a burglary.

He said: "During the course of the murder investigation, significant evidence emerged which proved Mitesh Patel had researched and planned Jess's death for a number of years, which culminated in Jess's murder.

"Even when faced with overwhelming evidence, Mitesh chose to inflict further pain and suffering upon Jess's family by not admitting his guilt, thereby exposing Jess's family to his deceitful, dishonest and wicked ways throughout trial."

How iPhone health app tracked killer's movements

The killer pharmacist's iPhone health app helped convict him in what was thought to be a legal first in the UK.

After his arrest, police seized Mitesh Patel's handset and downloaded critical information about his movements, including when the phone moved and where.

The health app uses motion processors in the phone to monitor a user's steps and when the handset is taken up a flight of stairs, and that evidence was used in court to show the killer's frantic movements around his home, going upstairs to ransack rooms to stage a break-in after he had strangled his wife in the living room.

It also showed that after he returned from a trip out to buy food that night, he had gone upstairs after he pretended to find his wife's stricken body, dashing into a bedroom to hide the house's CCTV hard-drive in a suitcase full of clothes.

Asian Image:

Mitesh Patel returning home carrying pizza and a black laptop bag.

Asian Image:

The scene inside the home of pharmacist Mitesh Patel, 37, who has been convicted at Teesside Crown Court of murdering his wife Jessica

His wife's phone was also analysed to reveal more evidence of Mitesh Patel's lies.

Research of Jessica Patel's health app showed the handset moved 14 steps at 7.44pm - the exact time Mitesh Patel left her lifeless body and fled the house to create an alibi.

He claimed his wife was still alive when he ventured out, but his story crumbled when the health app showed her phone remained motionless outside the couple's Middlesbrough home until 8.40pm that night.

That was when a police officer picked it up near their front door, where it had been left by Patel, 37, to make it look like it had been dumped by an intruder.

A legal source said it was thought to have been the first use of such in-depth iPhone health app analysis in a major UK trial.

By Tom Wilkinson and By Henry Clare