30/01/2007

Sentence increased for teenage killer

The teenage killer of schoolboy Joe Geeling has had his minimum sentence increased from 12 to 15 years.

Michael Hamer, 15, was sentenced to life imprisonment at Manchester Crown Court last October, after pleading guilty to murder.

The court heard how Hamer, who was 14 at the time of the murder, lured the eleven-year-old schoolboy back to his house from the school they both attended in Bury on March 1, 2006.

Hamer then beat Joe, who suffered from cystic fibrosis, with a frying pan and stabbed him to death in an attack that was described as "frenzied". It is understood that Joe had spurned some kind of sexual approach made to him by Hamer.

Joe's body was discovered in a park in Bury the next day.

The Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, referred the case to the Court of Appeal.

At the Court of Appeal on Tuesday, it was decided that the 12-year minimum sentence was "unduly lenient" and it was increased by three years.

Speaking after the verdict, Joe's father Tom Geeling, told reporters: "At long last we feel we have acheived a more just sentence for our son's killer."

(KMcA)


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