| 12.5°C Dublin

monster move Evil child-killer Jon Venables makes new bid for freedom

It has been reported that arrangements are being made to refer him to the parole board once again with a hearing taking place as early as April

Close

Jon Venables at the time of the James Bulger murder

Jon Venables at the time of the James Bulger murder

Jon Venables at the time of the James Bulger murder

One of James Bulger’s killers, Jon Venables, is to go before a parole hearing later this year as he makes a new bid for freedom.

The evil child-killer, now 39, was 10-tears-of-age in 1993 when he and his friend Robert Thompson, also 10, killed James (2) after taking him from a shopping centre in Bootle, Merseyside.

They both served eight years before being freed on licence with lifelong anonymity, before Venables was put back behind bars for the possession of child sex abuse images in 2010.

He was released just three years later with yet another new identity but was soon back in prison after nearly 1,200 child sex abuse images were found on his laptop in 2017.

It has been reported that arrangements are being made to refer him to the parole board once again with a hearing taking place as early as April.

As he was last refused parole in September 2020, it was reported at the time that he would have to spend another two years in jail before he can apply for it again.

Close

Victim James Bulger

Victim James Bulger

Victim James Bulger

Venables would normally have been allowed out automatically after 20 months, but he has a life licence, meaning he has to face the parole board before he is released.

At his last parole hearing, James Bulger's father Ralph said that Venables should never be freed.

“How can anyone say this monster is safe to live among us ever again?” he said at the time.

In October of last year rumours that Venables has been brutally murdered in prison were dismissed by authorities in the UK.

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

It had been widely circulated online that the killer of tot James Bulger was attacked and killed by fellow inmates.

Another version of the rumour claimed he had his eyes gouged out then murdered at a party in Port Talbot in Wales.

However, the Ministry of Justice has confirmed that no such attack has taken place and that Venables is in prison and alive.

Venables and Thompson became the youngest convicted murderers in Britain for 250 years when they were found guilty, with the judge at their trial in November of that year branding James' murder an act of "unparalleled evil and barbarity."

The killers were held in a secure children’s unit in St Helens, Merseyside, for eight years before being released under strict conditions in 2001.

Close

Jon Venables, left, and Robert Thompson (PA)

Jon Venables, left, and Robert Thompson (PA)

Jon Venables, left, and Robert Thompson (PA)

They were both given new names and identities after serving their sentence for murder but Venables has been in and out of prison since the murder conviction, and was back behind bars in 2010 for downloading and distributing indecent images of children.

When officers arrived at his flat, Venables was attempting to remove or destroy the hard drive of his computer with a knife and tin opener.

The computer was taken away and 57 indecent images of children over a 12-month period were found.

In July 2010, Venables appeared at the Old Bailey via video link which was only visible to the judge.

He pleaded guilty to charges of downloading and distributing child sex images and was given a sentence of two years in prison.

Venables was given another new identity after a "serious security breach" which could not be reported for legal reasons.

In September 2013, Venables was released from prison after a parole board approved the move two months before.

However, Venables was recalled to prison in November 2017 when he was caught with child abuse images once again.

The images included category A photos, the most serious type, and he also admitted having a “paedophile manual”.

During his hearing, the court heard that upon his arrest he told cops in the police car: "This is my own fault. I have let people down again.

"I have had urges, inquisitive. It won’t be a slap on the wrist for me.”

Venables, who appeared via a video link that only the judge could see, pleaded guilty to possession of indecent images of children for a second time and was sentenced to three years and four months in prison.

Sentencing him to 40 months’ jail in 2018, Mr Justice Edis said: “The children depicted were often very young and vulnerable, there is discernible pain and distress suffered.”

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Top Videos





Available now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or Google Podcasts.

Privacy