31/10/2007

Jurors Gasp As Cellar Killer’s Past Revealed

Two female jurors in a murder case burst into tears and others shook their heads as the trial of a man who turned out to be a convicted paedophile concluded.

They gasped as they learnt he was jailed in Strangeways Prison in April last year after admitting 18 sex offences involving a girl on beaches in North Wales.

However, the jury at Manchester Crown Court had already decided by a majority of 10 to two that Frederick Lawlor, 54, murdered a mother-of-four, Dorothy Carre, 56, in 1999.

He was subsequently jailed for life - with a minimum of 17 years - for murdering his then girlfriend, whose body lay undetected in a cellar for eight years.

The court heard how Lawlor stabbed her to death in the front room of their house in Rochdale, before burying her in a shallow grave in the cellar.

Unknown to the jurors, Lawlor is already serving an indeterminate sentence for sexually abusing a 13-year-old girl and offering her for sex with other men while he watched and filmed them.

The judge in that case said Lawlor had abused the girl on at least 75 occasions and described the acts as among the "most evil and unpleasant" the court had come across.

As well as offering her for sex at his flat and in a car to men he met on beaches at Pensarn and Llanddulas, he advertised in the publication Loot.

The young victim said she was abused by around 50 men, with 10 people so far convicted in connection with the case.

However, Lawlor was then arrested in March this year after police investigating the disappearance of mother-of-four Mrs Carre found the remains of a body under the cellar floor at the address in Equitable Street.

The court also heard that Lawlor had two previous convictions for physically abusing former girlfriends.

In 1981 he was convicted of actual bodily harm after he repeatedly punched his girlfriend and then jumped on her stomach while she was seven months pregnant.

And in 1987 he was sentenced to seven years in prison after pleading guilty to wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm for an attack on another partner which had striking similarities to the death of Mrs Carre.

(BMcC)


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