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The chemical engineer claimed he was making fireworks at HMP Wakefield

A white supremacist who stabbed an elderly man to death and planted home-made bombs at mosques has admitted making an explosive substance in his cell at a maximum-security jail.

Self-radicalised extremist Pavlo Lapshyn, 32, a chemical engineer, used salt, copper wire, pencil and other substances to form an ingredient which could be used to cause an explosion.

When officers at the category A prison HMP Wakefield found a plate with a white substance on it in his cell in August 2018, he told them he was trying to make a firework.

HMP Wakefield is known as Monster Mansion due to the number of high-profile, high-risk sex offenders and murderers there.

Lapshyn, a Ukrainian national, had just started a work placement in the UK when he murdered 82-year-old Mohammed Saleem in Small Heath, Birmingham, by randomly stabbing the grandfather in the back with a hunting knife in 2013.

In the following months he planted bombs near mosques in the West Midlands, later stating his aim was to start a race war.

Since he was jailed for life with a minimum term of 40 years he has been assessed by psychiatrists and has an autism diagnosis along with “significant mental health problems”, Leeds Crown Court heard.

He pleaded guilty to making an explosive substance via a videolink from HMP Whitemoor, was heard singing at points during the hearing and declined to be present when Judge Tom Bayliss QC passed a two-year jail sentence.

Peter Hampton, prosecuting, said Lapshyn admitted to officers that he had been preparing chemicals during their routine search of his cell and they informed counter-terrorism specialists in the prison.

They knew of his background as a chemical engineering PhD student, his racially-motivated murder and explosives campaign, and “a long-standing interest in pyrotechnics”, Mr Hampton said.

The defendant told officers he was trying to produce potassium chloride. A smell of bleach could be detected in the cell.

A forensic expert who was called in determined Lapshyn had formed a viable explosive substance.

Attempts were made to interview the defendant about this, the court heard, but he was unable or unwilling to assist.

After moving to HMP Whitemoor, he wrote a chemical formula on his cell wall which he said was related to pyrotechnics.

Searches of his cell there found he was hiding substances including vinegar, artificial sweetener and salt.

Mr Hampton said of his offending at HMP Wakefield: “The defendant’s actions clearly caused the risk of explosion or fire within a category A prison, potentially to harm officers, other prisoners or Mr Lapshyn himself, and interferes with the general running of the prison.”

Judge Bayliss said it was right for the CPS to bring the prosecution but he would not pass a consecutive sentence as Lapshyn – whom he described as a “highly intelligent man” – was already serving a minimum term of 40 years.

He said: “He wouldn’t even be considered for release by the Parole Board until he is 65 and he is very unlikely ever to be released given his position.”

Manchester Evening Post

A sadistic and predatory homosexual became a serial killer for fun, stabbing four men in murders which left him feeling “at peace”, a court was told yesterday.

Peter Moore’s wardrobe had strong Nazi influences, Alex Carlile, QC, for the prosecution, said at Mold Crown Court in north Wales. He liked to wear black leather when lurking at the meeting places of homosexuals. “The man in black – black thoughts and the blackest of deeds,” Mr Carlile said.

Moore, 50, of Kinmel Bay, Flintshire, admitted during protracted police questioning to more than 17 attacks over 20 years, none of them homicidal.

But in May 1994, his mother died, an event which may have triggered “an extremely ugly change in character”, Mr Carlile said.

Moore, owner of four small cinemas , denies four charges of murder. The killings were carried out during three months beginning in September last year.

Mr Carlile said Moore had met the victims by chance. He expected to be caught after ending his killing spree with the murder of his bank manager.

His first victim, Henry Roberts, 56, coincidentally shared with his killer an enthusiasm for Nazi paraphernalia. Mr Roberts tried to protest he was not Jewish as Moore launched 27 blows with a combat knife he had bought a few days earlier for pounds 25. The body was left in the yard outside Mr Roberts’ isolated home near Valley, Anglesey.

A month later, Keith Randles, 49, a security manager, opened the door of his caravan late at night on a construction site near Mona, Anglesey, to be attacked by Moore, who stabbed him 12 times. Moore later told police that when Mr Randles asked why he was being attacked, he was told it was for fun. “He looked nonplussed,” Moore allegedly had said.

In December, Tony Davies, 35, drove to Pensarn Beach near Colwyn Bay, a meeting place near his home for homosexual men. Moore told detectives that he had been cruising the area when he saw Mr Davies expose himself.

Mr Carlile said Moore killed him with six stabs. Blood found on the beach was matched by DNA profile to Moore. The wound had been caused as Mr Davies fought for his life.

When police searched Moore’s home, where he lived alone, they found property belonging to his victims in the house and in a garden pond. A knife bearing traces of the blood of a number of men was found in a bag belonging to Moore. It was similar to the blade scientific evidence would claim was used on the four men.

Moore’s other victim was killed between October and December 1995. Edward Carthy, 28, from Birkenhead, was a drug addict and drunk whom Moore met in a homosexual bar in Liverpool, Mr Carlile said. The pair drove to North Wales, Mr Carthy drunk but trying to escape from Moore’s van. He was stabbed to death and buried in dense forest near Ruthin. Moore later drew police a diagram locating the body, Mr Carlisle said.

He was a dominant homosexual, a violent and predatory sadist who drew sexual satisfaction from causing pain and suffering.

By day he appeared only to be an unremarkable businessman, Mr Carlile said. But he added: “The nocturnal Peter Moore was one of the most dangerous people ever to have set foot in Wales.”

The Independent

From 1996

Further info here

Unemployed gardener, 53, given whole-life sentence for murder of MP that judge said was inspired by white supremacism

An extreme rightwing terrorist has been sentenced to prison for the rest of his life for the murder of the Labour MP Jo Cox after a seven-day Old Bailey trial in which he made no effort to defend himself.

Thomas Mair repeatedly shot and stabbed Cox in an attack during the EU referendum campaign in June. While attacking her he was saying: “This is for Britain”, “keep Britain independent”, and “Britain first”, the court heard.

The judge said Mair would have to serve a whole-life sentence due to the “exceptional seriousness” of the offence: a murder committed to advance a cause associated with Nazism.

Mr Justice Wilkie refused Mair’s request to address the court, saying he had already had opportunities to explain himself, and had not done so.

Cox, the judge told Mair, was not only a “passionate, open-hearted, inclusive and generous” person, but a true patriot. He, on the other hand “affected to be a patriot”.

“It is evident from your internet searches that your inspiration is not love of country or your fellow citizens, it is an admiration for Nazis and similar anti-democratic white supremacist creeds,” Wilkie said. “Our parents’ generation made huge sacrifices to defeat those ideas and values in the second world war. What you did … betrays those sacrifices.”

Mair had “betrayed the quintessence of our country, its adherence to parliamentary democracy”. By not having the courage to admit his crime, the judge added, he had forced the prosecution to prove their case in detail, which “no doubt deliberately”had increased the anguish of his victim’s family.

Mair struck on 16 June after Cox got out of a car in Birstall, a small market town in West Yorkshire that was part of her Batley and Spen constituency. He shot her twice in the head and once in the chest with a sawn-off .22 hunting rifle before stabbing her 15 times.

The MP died shortly afterwards in the back of an ambulance, despite emergency surgery. She was 41, and the mother of two children, then aged five and three.

Evidence quickly gathered by police, including books found at Mair’s home and an examination of his online activities, showed him to be obsessed with the Nazis, notions of white supremacy and apartheid-era South Africa.

He underwent an examination by a psychiatrist, who could find no evidence that he was not responsible for his actions as a consequence of poor mental health.

Mair was also found guilty of grievous bodily harm against a passerby, Bernard Carter-Kenny, a retired coal miner who was stabbed when he came to Cox’s aid, possession of a firearm with intent and possession of a dagger. The jury took just over 90 minutes to reach its verdicts.

Mair showed no reaction as the judge denied his request to address the court and was led to the cells. Brendan Cox, the MP’s grieving husband, watched as other family members hugged and wiped away tears.

Earlier, Mair had rolled his eyes as Brendan Cox read a statement to the court in which he paid tribute to his wife and said the family had no interest in her killer.

“We feel nothing but pity for him; that his life was so devoid of love that his only way of finding meaning was to attack a defenceless woman who represented the best of our country in an act of supreme cowardice.”

Speaking outside the Old Bailey after the verdicts, he added: “To the world, Jo was a member of parliament, a campaigner, an activist and many other things. But first and foremost she was a sister, a daughter, an auntie, a wife, and above all a mum to two young children who love her with all their being.

“All their lives they have been enveloped in her love, excited by her energy and inspired by her example. We try now not to focus on how unlucky we were to have her taken from us, but how lucky we were to have her in our lives for so long.”

He also thanked the hundreds of people – on the day of the murder, and the weeks that followed – for their bravery and compassion. “This has been Britain at its best – compassionate, courageous and kind. It’s given us great strength and solace.”

The Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, said the murder was “an attack on democracy, and has robbed the world of an ambassador of kindness and compassion”.

Amber Rudd, the home secretary, said the murder was a “shocking and senseless” attack on the values of democracy and tolerance. “I am determined that we challenge extremism in all its forms including the evil of far-right extremism and the terrible damage it can cause to individuals, families and communities.”

After the verdicts, Sue Hemming, head of special crime and counter-terrorism at the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “Mair has offered no explanation for his actions but the prosecution was able to demonstrate that, motivated by hate, his premeditated crimes were nothing less than acts of terrorism designed to advance his twisted ideology.”

Following the verdicts, Richard Whittam QC, prosecuting, told the court that Mair had committed a terrorism offence when he murdered Cox, although the jury had not been told that he was regarded as a terrorist.

There were two reasons for this. Mair was charged with murder, which is a crime under common law and not an offence under counter-terrorism legislation; and the jury was only to be asked to decide whether or not Mair had committed the crime of murder. It was not asked to consider his motivation.

Prosecutors acknowledge privately that the febrile atmosphere in which the EU referendum campaign was waged appears certain to have contributed to Mair’s decision to murder his MP, but this played no part in their case. There was no need to refer to the referendum in order to establish his guilt.

The evidence against the 53-year-old unemployed gardener had been overwhelming. He lived in Birstall and witnesses to the attack included people who had known him all his life. The incident was also captured on CCTV, as was his escape.

Police later found that a library of far-right literature in his bedroom, including books on the Nazis and white supremacism. On top of the bookshelf was a gold-coloured Third Reich eagle with a swastika.

Examination of his browsing history revealed that he had been searching for material about the British national party, apartheid, the Ku Klux Klan, prominent Jewish people, Israel and matricide.

In his closing speech, Whittam said Cox had been the victim of a cowardly attack. “The sheer brutality of her murder and the utter cowardice of her murderer bring the two extremities of humanity face to face,” he said.

Mair never admitted the offences, but nor did he deny them. When he appeared at the Old Bailey last month via videolink from Belmarsh prison in south-east London, he refused to enter a plea. He made clear that he could see and hear what was happening in court, but when asked how he pleaded, he stared down the camera and said nothing. During the trial he did not offer a defence.

As a consequence, not guilty pleas were entered on his behalf to all four charges, as required by law.

Each day during the trial, Mair remained immobile and impassive, staring straight ahead and rarely looking around. He used a notepad, but instead of making notes about the trial, he could be seen to be writing down the names of people in court whom he recognised: a TV journalist, an MP from a neighbouring constituency and a member of Cox’s family.

It was, an observer said, as though he was recording the identities of the people who had come to see him have his day in court.

Speaking from the witness box after the verdict had been announced Cox’s husband said Mair had failed. “The killing of Jo was in my view a political act, an act of terrorism,” he told the court. “But in the history of such acts it was perhaps the most incompetent and self-defeating. An act driven by hatred, which instead has created an outpouring of love. An act designed to drive communities apart which has instead pulled them together. An act designed to silence a voice which instead has allowed millions of others to hear it.

“Jo is no longer with us, but her love, her example and her values live on. For the rest of our lives we will not lament how unlucky we were to have her taken from us, but how unbelievably lucky we were to have her in our lives for so long.”

The Guardian

A Ukrainian student has been jailed for at least 40 years for murdering an 82-year-old man and plotting explosions near mosques in racist attacks.

Pavlo Lapshyn stabbed Mohammed Saleem in Small Heath, Birmingham on 29 April, five days after arriving in the UK.

On Monday, Lapshyn, 25, admitted murder as well as plotting to cause explosions near mosques in Walsall, Tipton and Wolverhampton in June and July.

At the Old Bailey, he was told he would be jailed for life.

Mr Saleem was stabbed to death, just yards from his home, after attending prayers at his local mosque in Green Lane.

Lapshyn, from Dnipropetrovsk in Ukraine, was living in Birmingham while on a temporary work placement in the city when he killed Mr Saleem, a grandfather of 22.

He later planted three bombs near mosques in the West Midlands as part of a campaign he said was motivated by racial hatred.

He was arrested almost a week after an explosion in Tipton.

‘Hated non-whites’

The third device, which exploded near the Kanzul Iman mosque in Tipton on 12 July, was packed with nails.

Police said it was only because Lapshyn got the wrong time for Friday prayers that the blast did not cause mass injuries.

Sentencing, Mr Justice Sweeney told him: “You clearly hold extremist right-wing, white supremacist views and you were motivated to commit the offences by religious and racial hatred in the hope that you would ignite racial conflict and cause Muslims to leave the area where you were living.

“Such views, hatred and motivations have no place whatsoever in our multi-faith and multi-cultural society.”

He added Lapshyn held “views abhorrent to all right-thinking people which have no place in our multi-cultural society”.

During interviews, Lapshyn told police he had murdered the grandfather of 22 because he hated “non-whites”.

Prosecutor Peter Wright QC told the Old Bailey that PhD student Lapshyn had come to the UK on a work placement with software company Delcam.

The firm’s sponsorship programme in partnership with the National Metallurgy Academy in Ukraine is now under review following his crimes.

Lapshyn’s apartment, above Delcam’s offices in Birmingham, were raided by police who found chemicals and bomb-making equipment for another three devices.
‘White power’

They also discovered a camera containing 455 photographs and 98 videos. Some of them showed Lapshyn detonating homemade bombs in the Ukrainian countryside. The camera also included shots of him making bombs.

The force’s anti-terrorism unit also discovered apparent anonymous notes in the apartment which he planned to use to taunt police.

One featured a photograph of the hunting knife, next to which Lapshyn had written “Mohammed Saleem was killed by”.

He also referred to a police reward for information, saying “£10,000 small price, maybe £1m”, followed by a smiley face, and the phrase “white power”.

The court heard Lapshyn had a video game on his laptop called Ethnic Cleansing and also posed for white a supremacist website with the knife.

Defending, Richard Atkins QC said “we accept that his crimes are grave” and “the appropriate penalty we submit is life with a substantial minimum term”.

Mr Atkins told the court that Lapshyn is being kept in segregation and that the only person he speaks to regularly is his father.

In an interview with the BBC, Lapshyn’s father, Sergey Lapshyn, said he did not believe his son was a racist.

“Among his acquaintances were people of different ethnic backgrounds, and I have never seen that (racism),” he said.

He added his son could be “a bit tight-lipped” but was not calculating, as police had described him.

Speaking from his home in Dnepropetrovsk, Lapshyn’s father confirmed his own mother was a Muslim during her childhood.

Lapshyn’s father said his son knew his grandmother was a member of the (largely Muslim) Tatar community at the time of the former Soviet Union.

“We never discussed religious problems and we always considered them to be very intimate,” he said.
‘Can’t move forward’

Mr Saleem’s family said their father had not done anything to deserve to die, other than be a Muslim.

In a statement read out in court, Mr Saleem’s daughter Shazia Khan said: “The shock and sadness of the reality is impossible to accept, yet alone accept and move on.

“We can’t move forward, the murder has disabled our minds in every emotional way possible.”

Speaking after the sentencing, Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale from West Midlands Police said Lapshyn was “very definitely driven by an extreme right-wing ideology and white supremacist ideology”.

Asked to describe Lapshyn’s manner in police interview, he said: “He was matter-of-fact, he was cold, he was callous.

“I do not think he has shown any remorse or regret for the crimes that have taken place.”

BBC News

From 2013

A Barnsley killer who has spent the first night of a life sentence behind bars has shown no remorse for his actions, detectives have revealed.

Ricky Ramsden, aged 27 and formerly of Dodworth Road, was jailed for life yesterday after being found guilty of the murder of 39-year-old Dawid Szubert in Barnsley town centre in June.

He was ordered to serve a minimum of 17 years behind bars for killing Mr Szubert in broad daylight as he lay unconscious near the Civic Gardens after taking the drug Spice.

Ramsden stamped on his victim’s head, triggering a cardiac arrest and Mr Szubert was pronounced dead at the scene.

South Yorkshire Police said the killer had ‘taken exception’ to Mr Szubert having taken Spice and had shown no remorse for the murder.

Detective Chief Inspector Steve Whittaker said: “The brutality and callousness shown by Ramsden is as shocking as it is appalling and throughout our inquiry, he has shown no remorse for his actions and has continued to deny his involvement in Mr Szubert’s death.

“The court heard that on that day Mr Szubert, a Polish national who had lived in Barnsley for approximately two years, had taken the drug spice and was laid unconscious.

“Ramsden took exception to this, walked over to Mr Szubert and stamped on his head, stating that he was sick of seeing spice heads.”

Sheffield Star

An avowed supporter of neo-Nazi beliefs who took part in the violent and chaotic white supremacist “Unite the Right” rally in this city last year was found guilty Friday of first-degree murder for killing a woman by ramming his car through a crowd of counterprotesters.

A jury of seven women and five men began deliberating Friday morning and took just over seven hours to reach its decision that James Alex Fields Jr., 21, of Maumee, Ohio, acted with premeditation when he backed up his 2010 Dodge Challenger and then roared it down a narrow downtown street crowded with counterprotesters, slamming into them and another car. Heather D. Heyer, 32, was killed and 35 others injured, many grievously.

The deadly attack in the early afternoon of August 12, 2017 culminated a dark 24 hours in this quiet college town. It was marked by a menacing torchlight march through the University of Virginia campus the night before, with participants shouting racist and anti-Semitic insults, and wild street battles on the morning of the planned rally between white supremacists and those opposing their ideology.

As the sounds and images of brutal beatings, bloodied faces and hate-filled chants spread across the country and around the world, this city quickly became identified with the emergence of a new order of white supremacy that no longer felt compelled to hide in the shadows or the safety of online anonymity.

Many in their emboldened ranks shouted fascist slogans, displayed Nazi swastikas and Confederate battle flags and extended their arms in Sieg Heil salutes. And many also wore red Make America Great Again hats, saying they were encouraged in the public display of their beliefs by President Trump, who later that week would say that there were “very fine people” on both sides of the demonstration.

Fields’s conviction followed six days of testimony in Charlottesville Circuit Court, where Heyer’s deadly injuries were detailed and survivors of the crash described the chaos and their own injuries. Jeanne Peterson, 38, who limped to the witness stand with the help of bailiffs, said she’d had five surgeries and would have another next year. Wednesday Bowie, a counterprotester in her 20s, said her pelvis was broken in six places. Marcus Martin described pushing his then-fiancee out of the Challenger’s path before he was struck.

Susan Bro, Heyer’s mother, sat near the front of the crowded courtroom every day watching the proceedings overseen by Judge Richard E. Moore. Fields’s mother, Samantha Bloom, sat in her wheelchair on the other side, an island in a sea of her son’s victims and their supporters.

[From wary observer to justice warrior: How Heather Heyer’s death gave her mom a voice]

For both prosecutors and Fields’s defense lawyers, the case was always about intent. Defense attorneys Denise Lunsford and John Hill did not deny Fields drove the car that killed Heyer and injured dozens. But they said it was not out of malice, rather out of fear for his own safety and confusion. They said he regretted his actions immediately, and pointed the jury to his repeated professions of sorrow shortly after his arrest and his uncontrollable sobbing when he learned of the injuries and death he had caused.

“He wasn’t angry, he was scared,” Lunsford told the jury in her closing argument.

Early in the trial the defense said there would be testimony from witnesses concerning Fields’s mental health, but those witnesses were never brought forward.

Prosecutors, though, said Fields was enraged when he drove more than 500 miles from his apartment in Ohio to take part in the rally — and later chose to act on that anger by ramming his two-door muscle car into the crowd. They described Fields “idling, watching” in his Challenger on Fourth Street and surveying a diverse and joyous crowd of marchers a block and a half away that was celebrating the cancellation of the planned rally.

They showed video and presented witnesses testifying that there was no one around Fields’s car when he slowly backed it up the street and then raced it forward down the hill into the unsuspecting crowd. In her final address to the jury Thursday, Senior-Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Nina-Alice Antony showed a close-up of Fields in his car to rebut the idea that he was frightened when he acted.

“This is not the face of someone who is scared,” Antony said. “This is the face of anger, of hatred. It’s the face of malice.”

Jurors were shown a now-deleted Instagram post that Fields shared three months before the crash. “You Have the Right to Protest, But I’m Late for Work,” read the post, accompanied by an image of a car running into a group of people.

As he looked down the crowded street Fields saw a chance, Antony told the jury, to “make his Instagram post a reality.”

Jurors also saw a text exchange shortly before the rally in which Fields told his mother he was planning to attend, and she told him to be careful. “We’re not the one who need to be careful,” Fields replied in a misspelled text message on Aug. 11, 2017. He included an attachment: a meme showing Adolf Hitler.

Lunsford dismissed the significance of the Hitler photo and Fields’s Instagram post and asked the jury to ignore how they felt about Field’s political views when deciding whether to convict him.

“You can’t do that based on the fact that he holds extreme right-wing views,” she said.

April Muñiz, 50, was on Fourth Street when Fields drove into the crowd. She escaped physical injury but is still traumatized by witnessing the violent act and seeing so many people she was celebrating with one moment suffer horrific injuries the next. Muñiz attended every day of the proceedings and said the trial helped her “pull the shattered pieces of that day together.”

The guilty verdict for Fields is not the end of his legal troubles. He still faces a federal trial on hate crimes that carries the possibility of the death penalty.

And the guilty verdict does not bring an end to this city’s misery. The legacy of that hate-filled weekend hangs over the city, a cloud that refuses to blow away. The physical and psychic injuries are slow to fade. The trial surfaced painful memories and emotions for many in this small city who were in the streets that day or have friends and acquaintances who were injured.

The city became the focal point for white supremacists when city council members voted to remove statues of Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson from downtown parks. The statues were erected in the 1920s during the Jim Crow era. After the August violence, the council voted to sell both statues, but they remain in place for now under a court injunction. Confederate heritage supporters sued the city, saying that a Virginia law prohibits removal of the statues.

“A lot of people have worked hard for Aug. 12 not to feel like every day of our lives,” said Seth Wispelwey, a local minister who helped form Congregate Charlottesville, a faith-based group formed in advance of a Ku Klux Klan rally and the Unite the Right rally here last summer. “This trial acutely and minutely relived that weekend, so that has been very difficult for many folks.”

Though Fields’s trial has been the most extensively covered, there are more trials and lawsuits to come, including one against Jason Kessler, a city resident and one of the rally’s organizers. And the fate of the two Confederate statues — the original spark for the violence of 2017 — is scheduled to be decided in a court here in January

Paul Duggan contributed to this report.

Washington Post

The man who groomed and murdered Blackpool girl Paige Chivers has been given a further jail term for subjecting two young children to a catalogue of vile physical and sexual abuse more than a decade before killing the vulnerable teen.

Robert Ewing, 66, was jailed for life in 2015 for the 2007 murder of 15-year-old Paige, whom he had exploited sexually.

Robert Ewing and Paige Chivers

Robert Ewing and Paige Chivers

It has since emerged that he terrorised a young girl and boy in the early 1990s, with one of the children as young as five.

He was given 15 years in jail after being found guilty of the latest offences at Preston Crown Court – but the court heard due to his ongoing 32-year sentence he is not eligible for parole until he is aged 92.

Judge Philip Parry said Ewing could appear “charming and beguiling” to other adults.

But he told the killer: “Behind closed doors with children you were a brutal, perverted and sadistic bully.

“Many would describe you as evil incarnate. You are in judgement a modern day monster.”

He said Ewing made the girl’s life “an utter misery” while treating the boy “like a play thing”.

The court heard he subjected the little boy to physical abuse by tying him up, throwing urine at him, defecating on his bed, throwing him around, dragging him by his hair and hitting him with a back scratcher.

He was found guilty of two counts of indecently assaulting the boy, and a count of child cruelty towards each of the children.

Some jurors were visibly distressed as they were then told he was responsible for Paige’s murder and other offences.

Ewing, wearing a bottle green jumper, sat with his arms folded gave no reaction as the girl, now a grown woman, stood in the witness box to tell the court how his depraved behaviour affected her.

She said: “He tried to rid me of my pride, my dignity, and my identity.

“He became a permanent image in my mind. I saw him all the time. I would wake up and I couldn’t breathe.”

She said she needed years of therapy to deal with the effects of her abuse, adding: “Now I know I can walk away from all of this and be free.”

The boy, in a statement, said: “I really believed when he made threats to kill me I thought he would do it.

“I was made to feel I must have been so naughty that Robert Ewing was punishing me for what I had done.”

The court previously heard how the child killer forced the girl to watch while he tortured the boy, who was just seven or eight-years-old at the time.

He would subject her to cold baths and would force her head under the water until she couldn’t breathe.

The girl, who was aged as young as nine, was frequently woken at night and made to crawl around and pick up fluff from the carpet.

The boy was also made to stand naked on a chair while Ewing watched him, and he would sexually assault him.

Previously prosecutor Robert Dudley told the jury: “He would be told that was what he got for being a dirty, disgusting thing.”

The court heard the boy’s headmaster raised concerns about rope burns on the boy’s wrists – caused by Ewing – but he was “too scared to tell the truth” and blamed them on another child.

A later police investigation saw Ewing convicted of two counts of gross indecency and one count of indecent assault at Wolverhampton Crown Court in 1995.

In 2007, Ewing, formerly of Kincraig Place, Bispham, was convicted of murdering Paige Chivers, who was last seen on August 23, 2007, at a bus stop in Ashfield Road, Bispham.

The 15-year-old’s body has never been found but Ewing was convicted of killing her in his flat after bloodstains were found.

He was also found guilty of perverting the course of justice.

During a search of Ewing’s flat in All Hallows Road, Bispham, police officers found a hoard of cuttings about the case and about the murder.

Blackpool Gazette.

A WELL-known hard man has been jailed after being convicted of an offence relating to the ride-by shooting of a nightclub bouncer.

John Henry Sayers was given a three-and-a-half-year sentence at the Old Bailey on Friday after being convicted of perverting the course of justice, a court official said.

During the trial, jurors were told the defendant was “a man to be feared” who had “acquired and promoted a reputation” and would not allow his name to be disrespected.

He had initially been accused of ordering the attack on doorman Matthew McCauley outside the Tup Tup Palace on June 6 2015, but was found not guilty of conspiracy to murder, alongside co-defendant Michael Dixon, 50. Both men are from Walker, Newcastle.

Prosecutor Simon Denison QC had claimed Sayers ordered the attack after his son was turned away from the Newcastle nightclub weeks earlier, but this was rejected by the jury.

The 54-year-old was also cleared of conspiracy to possess a shotgun with intent to endanger life, while Dixon was found guilty of the same offence and given a life sentence with a minimum of eight years, the court official said.

Sayers and a third defendant, Michael McDougall, 50, were convicted of perverting the course of justice over a false statement given in 2017.

Convicted murderer McDougall, who is serving a life sentence, told “a pack of lies” by trying to claim he was the gunman in the incident, jurors heard.

As a result, he was given two years to run consecutively after his current life sentence

Sayers had previously been cleared of ordering another murder – the doorstep shooting of a man in 2000 – and subsequently cleared of nobbling the Leeds jury in that case.

However, he is a convicted robber and tax evader and is said to be a name to be feared in Tyneside.

Northern Echo

Details of the murder conviction can be found here.

Michael McDougall.

Michael McDougall.

A killer who murdered a takeaway boss has been found guilty of perverting the course of justice after claiming to be a gunman responsible for a nightclub shooting.

Michael McDougall, 50, previously of Hylton Avenue, Marsden, South Shields and now an inmate of HMP Wakefield, has been found guilty of the charge following a trial at the Old Bailey in London.

The offence relates to a drive-by shooting outside Tup Tup Palace in Newcastle, on June 6, 2015.

A 24-year-old doorman was shot in the arm when a gunman on a motorbike opened fire using a sawn-off shotgun.

McDougall was jailed for a life sentence of 34 years in April 2016 after he was found guilty of shooting Sunderland dad-of-two Tipu Sultan.

The 32-year-old businessman had run the Herbs & Spice Kitchen takeaway in Lake Avenue, Marsden, South Shields, with his family.

McDougall was also found guilty of two charges of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life following a trial at Newcastle Crown Court.

His co-accused Michael Mullen, 24, of Hawthorne Avenue, Cleadon Park, South Shields, who had taken McDougall to and from the murder scene on the back of a motorbike, was cleared of murder but found guilty of manslaughter.

He was jailed for 12 years.

Just weeks after he was jailed McDougall launched an appeal against his conviction, which was denied by a judge.

Today, McDougall was found guilty of perverting the justice over a false statement made in 2017 as part of the inquiry into the Tup Tup incident.

The court heard the convicted murderer told “a pack of lies” by trying to claim he was the gunman, jurors heard.

He was jointly charged and stood trial alongside John Henry Sayers, 54, of Fossway, Walker, Newcastle, and Michael Dixon, 50, of no fixed address, who were accused of conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to possess a firearm.

Sayers, a well-known hard man, has been cleared of ordering the ride-by shooting of a bouncer because his son had been thrown out of a nightclub, but has been told he still faces a prison term for perverting the course of justice.

The court heard doorman Matthew McCauley was lucky to survive the shooting, which also left two other members of staff injured.

Sayers was accused of ordering Dixon to carry out the shooting after his son was ejected from the club weeks before.

An Old Bailey jury deliberated for more than 30 hours to find Sayers and Dixon, both from Walker in Newcastle, not guilty of conspiracy to murder.

The pair gave audible sighs of relief in the dock as they were cleared of the offence.

Sayers was also acquitted of conspiring to possess a shotgun with intent to endanger life, while Dixon was found guilty by a majority of 11 to one.

Judge Mark Lucraft QC told serving prisoner Dixon he would take into account that he had already been convicted of another offence committed around the same time.

A fourth defendant – Russell Sturman, 26, from Gosforth, Newcastle – hugged his co-accused in the dock after being cleared of assisting an offender.

Before the trial started, there had been an unsuccessful application by the prosecution to try the case without a jury and it was held well away from Sayers’ home turf in the North East.

Sayers had already been cleared of ordering another murder – the doorstep shooting of a man in 2000 – and subsequently cleared of nobbling the Leeds jury in that case.

However, he is a convicted armed robber and tax-evader and said to be a name to be feared on Tyneside.

Sayers’ son had been thrown out of the trendy Tup Tup Palace and was punched by a doorman weeks earlier.

Prosecutor Simon Denison QC said Sayers had “acquired and promoted a reputation”, and he wouldn’t allow his name to be “disrespected”.

Sayers’ reputation “as a man to be feared” meant “doors are opened for his family”, he added.

“Of course, that only lasts as long as the reputation is believed to be justified – which means that if his family is disrespected, violence has to follow.”

The family was given free entry to clubs without having to queue and free access to VIP areas “just to avoid serious trouble”.

The convicted defendants were remanded into custody to be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Friday, September 21.

A Northumbria Police spokesman said: “This case was thoroughly investigated by a team of dedicated detectives.

“The evidence was subjected to careful scrutiny before a decision was taken to charge and it was only right that this evidence was put in front of a jury.

“We respect the decision the jury has made.”

Sunderland Echo

Michael McDougall was convicted of murder in 2016 and details of that murder can be found here

His killers have been jailed for life with minimum terms totalling 34 years

The family of murdered Andrew Groves made a loving tribute to him on the day his killers were jailed.

Russell Oakey and Michael Dommett both received life terms today (July 26). Oakey, 42 and of Hanham High Street, was convicted by a jury and Dommett, 38 and of Oakhanger Drive, entered a guilty plea part way through a trial.

Bristol Crown Court heard 47-year-old Mr Groves sustained a brutal beating in a house in Oakhanger Drive, Lawrence Weston, which was then set on fire.

 Michael Dommett (left) and Russell Oakey. Both have been jailed for life for murdering Bristol dad Andrew Groves. (Image: Avon and Somerset Constabulary)

Michael Dommett (left) and Russell Oakey. Both have been jailed for life for murdering Bristol dad Andrew Groves. (Image: Avon and Somerset Constabulary)

‘A devoted family man’

As the case concluded Mr Groves’ family said: “The sentence these two men will get will be never enough for us as a family. For we will never see our dear Andrew again.

“Andrew was a kind and loving son, a truly beautiful person, and was loved by so many people.

“He was a hard-working and devoted family man and his sudden death has been devastating to his wife, his son Lewis and daughter Molly.”

The family also thanked the emergency services who first attended the scene, and made desperate attempts to revive Mr Groves.

The statement adds: “We would also like to say thank you to Avon and Somerset Police’s Major Crime Investigation Team, who had over 70 people working on the investigation.

“Without them and their hard work and professionalism we would not be here today.

“We would also like to say a very special thank you to three amazing people who have given us their support, compassion and help during this very difficult time – DC Hilary Bolland, DC Carol Doxsey and Krissy of Victim Support.

“Once again thank you to you all.”

‘Daddy’s girl’

The court today heard statements from Mr Groves’ family.

Mr Groves’ daughter Molly was 17 when her dad was murdered. She said she was a “daddy’s girl”, her dad was very affectionate and would help his children with their homework.

She said: “Dad was always really proud of me and my brother.”

She remembered going to the cinema with her dad, with his large Coke and nachos, looking happy. When her dad died she felt scared and didn’t know what to do, she said.

She thought Mike Dommett had been her dad’s friend, and she couldn’t understand why anyone would want to hurt him.

She found life after the killing very difficult, she said, but wanted to attend court for the trial to hear what happened and listened to awful things. She described her dad as a family man who was always smiling.

Andrew’s father Barry said Andrew was born at Southmead Hospital and when he saw him for the first time he was the most beautiful baby he had ever seen. He last saw him four days before he was murdered and he was his “usual, cheerful self”.

When Mr Groves was told of a murder inquiry regarding his son he thought: “Why would anyone kill my son? He’s never had an enemy in my life.”

He said he had to identify him at a mortuary and even though he had sustained horrendous injuries he was still his beautiful son.

He said: “That day my life, and that of Andrew’s family and friends, changed for ever.”

Mr Groves said the sadness would live with his family for ever.

The deceased would always do anything for his children, he said, and they missed their loving, generous and hard-working dad.

He said: “I’m devastated I will never see my beautiful son again. I hope those found guilty of his murder get the maximum the court can give.”

Mr Groves son wanted him as best man

Andrew Groves’ son Lewis was 25 when he learned of the death of his dad.

Today the court heard how he went to his dad’s home and found police at the scene. He said his dad was his best friend and they had a very special relationship. He said his dad would have been his best man at his wedding but he never got the chance to ask him. Since the murder he has felt so much negativity, he said.

He said he found it hard to look at motorbikes, knowing how much his dad liked them. He said the intention to set light to his dad was hard to hear

‘We are the ones serving a life sentence’

Louise Groves, Andrew’s former wife, said Andrew was kind, happy and had the biggest heart. She said his life was his family and loved nothing more than family trips and celebrations. He wanted nothing more than his children to be happy, she said.

She said: “No-one deserves the pure evil inflicted on him. No punishment will ever be enough. We are the ones serving a life sentence.”

Police statement – pair ‘concocted a series of lies’

Senior Investigating Officer DI Lorna Dallimore said: “These convictions are the result of a detailed and painstaking investigation by officers and police staff.

“Andrew Groves was subjected to a truly horrific ordeal inside the house in Oakhanger Drive, with a fire deliberately started in an attempt to conceal evidence.

“We were able to prove Michael Dommett, who had taken on the tenancy of this property from his late father, and Russell Oakey were solely responsible for Andrew’s death.

“They concocted a series of lies to distance themselves from the scene of the crime and claimed they’d left Andrew at the property asleep.

“Through a combination of forensic and DNA evidence, analysis of telephone data and ANPR cameras, we were able to expose these lies and prove they were responsible for Andrew’s murder.

“I’d like to thank Andrew’s family for their support of our investigation and I hope these convictions will help them move forward with their lives.”

Bristol Post