Friday 28 November 2014

Jamie Bulger’s mum warns killer ‘still a danger’ on 20th anniversary of toddler’s murder

Paul Keaveny

Published 17/01/2013 | 10:43

Jon Venables at the time of his arrest in 1993 for the murder of James Bulger. Photo: Getty Images
Jon Venables at the time of his arrest in 1993 for the murder of James Bulger. Photo: Getty Images

JON Venables, one of James Bulger's killers, should not be released from prison because he is still "a great danger", the toddler's mother said today.

Denise Fergus was speaking ahead of the 20th anniversary of her son's death in Liverpool.

Venables and Robert Thompson and were 10 years old when they were found guilty of his murder on February 12, 1993.

They were jailed for life but released on licence with new identities in 2001.

Venables' parole was revoked and he was sent back to prison in 2010 for child pornography offences.

But now he has made a fresh plea for freedom.

Mrs Fergus told ITV's Daybreak that she thinks it is far too soon for him to be released.

"I think it's disgusting," she said. "I think it's far too early for him to come out at this moment in time.

"He's just not getting punished for the crimes that he's committing.

"I still believe he's a great danger to be on the outside and I still do believe that he should spend a lot more time on the inside."

Asked whether she thought Venables should be released as he had already spent his childhood in prison, Mrs Fergus said: "He didn't spend most of his childhood in prison - he only did eight years.

"At the end of the day he took James' life. James never even reached his third birthday.

"He (Venables) never spent most of his childhood time in prison at all, he never even did time in prison. He went to a young offenders' where he was totally looked after, given the best care of everything. He was given everything he asked for so, you know, in my eyes he got a better education, a better lifestyle than he had before he went in."

Speaking about the approaching 20th anniversary of James's death, she said: "It's really hard because I'm trying to get on with my life now with my three boys and my husband, Stuart.

"Every time I seem to pick myself up, something comes up and it takes me back down again, but I've always said I'll fight for justice for James and that's exactly what I'll do. I am his mum and I am still here for him and I'll do whatever it takes and I'll just keep on fighting."

When asked if Venables should be given another chance, Mrs Fergus said: "He was given another chance and he blew it. Why should he get another chance?"

She added: "I just think it's a waste of taxpayers' money. I don't think any more money should spent on him and, if and when he is released, I don't think he should be walking free.

"Anyway, I strongly believe he should be tagged and also if he is allowed to have a computer again I think that should be monitored as well."

Venables made a failed parole bid in November 2011 after he was sent back to jail in 2010 on child pornography charges.

The court heard he claimed online to be a woman who was willing to let her daughter be abused by paedophiles.

Venables had been on a "downward spiral" of drink and drugs as he struggled to live his life under an assumed identity, the court in 2010 heard.

It is understood that officials ruled out giving him another false identity, because they reportedly believe he is not able to keep his dark past secret.

Speaking in 2011, James' father Ralph Bulger, who told the parole board of the "daily nightmare" of life since his son's murder in February 1993, faces having to explain how he has been affected again when Venables' case is considered afresh.

"To have to explain again and afresh the daily nightmare in consequence of the murder adds to the suffering," his solicitor Robin Makin said.

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