Footballer Jlloyd Samuel lived the high life – until his horrific death in a car accident.
His £100,000 Range Rover exploded when it hit a van head-on and its driver was burned beyond recognition.
At first, the accident in May 2018 seemed like a simple, tragic car crash.
But later, shocking details of Jlloyd’s double life began to emerge.
He had a secret second wife – and she was convinced the body in the Range Rover wasn’t his.
A new ITVBe documentary, The Footballer, His Wife & the Crash examines the case – and features interviews with both Jlloyd’s wives.
So who was footballer Jlloyd Samuel, how did he manage to lead a double life, and could he still be alive?
Here’s everything you need to know.
Who was footballer Jlloyd Samuel?
Jlloyd was born in Trinidad and grew up in Bow, East London, where football offered a way out of poverty.
He played in a kids’ team alongside future Chelsea legend John Terry.
At 16, Jlloyd signed to Aston Villa and, three years later, met his first wife, Emma, in Manchester’s Loaf nightclub.
He told Emma he was an estate agent, only admitting the truth about his job a couple of months later.
Friends described them as totally in love.
With Jlloyd soon earning £15,000 a week, the couple joined the jet-set, buying properties in London, Manchester and Marbella.
It was the early 2000s, when WAGS (wives and girlfriends) were as famous as their footballing husbands. They were one of the game’s hottest couples.
In 2007, Jlloyd signed to Bolton Wanderers and the couple bought a £1.65m mansion in Cheshire for their growing family: they had two sons, Javarne and Lakyle.
The mansion even had its own bowling alley and nightclub.
They wed in Vegas, and a third child, daughter Amara, was born.
Was footballer Jlloyd Samuel in debt before his death?
Jlloyd and Emma’s glamorous lifestyle started to crash after Jlloyd sustained an injury and turned to online gambling, betting £13,000 in one day.
Once his injury healed, Bolton loaned him to Cardiff. But the press spotted him out drinking with some of his teammates before a big game.
The headlines slammed the players, who went on to lose their shot at promotion to the Premier League.
Jlloyd’s contract wasn’t renewed, and he was left unemployed with a £17,000 a month mortgage to pay and huge outgoings.
They were forced to sell the mansion at a £500,000 loss.
Broke, and without any offers from UK clubs, Jlloyd earned money by joining an Iranian football team, while Emma and the children stayed in the UK.
He played in Iran for five years, returning home every few weeks, before settling back in the UK with Emma in 2016.
Footballer Jlloyd Samuel death: How did he die?
On the morning of May 15 2018, Jlloyd drove his children to school in Cheshire.
On the way back, his Range Rover crossed the country road’s central white line and smashed head-on into an oncoming van.
The car literally exploded in a ball of flames. Anyone inside didn’t stand a chance.
The van driver also suffered serious injuries.
Forensic tests showed the Range Rover driver was more than twice the legal drink-drive limit.
The car had been travelling at 65mph, just 5mph over the speed limit, while the van was doing just over 40mph.
Emma told police that they had both been drinking the night before, but she had no idea Jlloyd was over the limit or would be unsafe driving.
Did Jlloyd Samuel lead a double life?
Four weeks after the crash, Emma received shocking news.
A friend told her a woman, fashion designer Helia Sahimi, was posting on her Instagram claiming to be Jlloyd’s wife.
Horrified, Emma scrolled through the woman’s Instagram. It was full of photos of Helia with Jlloyd.
She recognised the red-haired woman straightaway. They had met a year earlier, while Emma was visiting Jlloyd in Dubai.
Jlloyd was there arranging a business deal and Helia was with Jlloyd’s mother. She had introduced herself as a fortune teller.
But she wasn’t – she was, in fact, Jlloyd’s secret other wife. They’d been together for years since he first arrived in Iran.
He’d even converted to Islam to marry her – and, in Iran, Sharia Law allowed him to take a second wife.
Emma was completely devastated, and searched through emails and social media trying to discover the truth.
Was Jlloyd planning to run off with Helia, his Iranian wife?
According to Helia and Jlloyd’s sister Leslie-Ann, Jlloyd was planning to leave Emma for his Iranian wife.
Helia claimed on the day he died, he was due to fly to Casablanca to meet her and that they were going to start a new life together.
But Emma disputed this, saying he had bought her and the children tickets for a family holiday with him a week later.
Did footballer Jlloyd Samuel fake his own death? Is he still alive?
Helia and Jlloyd’s sister Leslie-Ann think Jlloyd is still alive.
They believe he faked his own death, insisting his body was not in the Range Rover.
At the inquest in 2019, the coroner ruled that teeth and a blood sample extracted from the remains were enough to prove that they were Jlloyd’s.
One forensic expert said the chances of the blood being his were “a billion times more likely” than anyone else’s.
The coroner ruled that the body was Jlloyd’s and that he died due to a road traffic collision.
But Helia and Jlloyd’s sister Leslie-Ann refuse to believe it.
Leslie-Ann and Jlloyd’s parents complained to the coroner and to Cheshire police that the investigation had not been properly carried out.
They wanted DNA tests carried out on the remains, which the coroner said was not necessary.
Both have frequently posted their concerns on social media, and demanded that Emma allow legal access to samples taken from the body, for DNA testing.
Emma’s solicitors confirmed she granted this. But Leslie-Ann is still in dispute and the tests have not yet been carried out.
Leslie-Ann also wants access to the postmortem photographs.
She has started a government petition to allow parents the legal right to access their dead child’s medical records and test their DNA. It has so far gathered 41 signatures.
Cheshire Police did not uphold the family’s complaint. They said the investigation into his death was “proportionate, timely and of the standard required”.
Where is Jlloyd Samuel’s wife Emma and their children now?
Emma lives in Cheshire and works as a beautician.
Her son Javarne is training to become a football agent.
Lakyle plays professional football for Manchester City’s Under-18 squad.
Her daughter Amara is still at school.
They still mourn the loss of their husband and dad.
The Footballer, His Wife & the Crash airs on ITVBe at 9pm on Thursday November 03 2022.
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