Sunday 16 December 2018

James Bulger's killer Jon Venables charged over child abuse images

Jon Venables, one of the child killers of toddler James Bulger. It has been reported that Venables has been returned to prison for a second time (PA)
Jon Venables, one of the child killers of toddler James Bulger. It has been reported that Venables has been returned to prison for a second time (PA)

Press Association Reporters

One of toddler James Bulger's killers has been charged over indecent images of children and his trial is to be held in private at an unnamed court, the Crown Prosecution Service has said.

Jon Venables was returned to prison in November after he was allegedly caught with child abuse images.

The CPS released a statement on Friday revealing that he had been charged and was to face trial.

The statement said: "The man formerly known as Jon Venables has been charged with offences relating to indecent images of children and will appear in the Crown Court.

"In order that justice can be done, no further details are being released at this stage and the proceedings are subject to reporting restrictions."

Venables and his friend Robert Thompson tortured and killed two-year-old James in Liverpool in 1993 when they were both aged 10.

After serving eight-year sentences, they were granted lifelong anonymity that saw them released under new identities in 2001.

Read More: James Bulger killer 'back in jail' after officers 'find child abuse images again'

Following his arrest in November, the Attorney General launched an investigation into claims his identity had been revealed on social media.

In 2013, two men who posted images they claimed to be of Venables and Thompson were given nine-month sentences, suspended for 15 months.

Breaking the injunction on identifying them carries a punishment of up to two years in prison.

When news of his latest arrest emerged, James's mother Denise Fergus said: "Venables has now proved beyond any doubt what a vile, perverted psychopath he has always been."

Read More: Investigation launched after new identity of Jamie Bulger's killer 'revealed online'

It is the second time he has been recalled to prison over child abuse images.

In 2010, Venables was sent back to jail for two years after pleading guilty to charges of downloading and distributing child pornography.

In September 2008, he was arrested on suspicion of affray after a drunken brawl and was given a formal warning by the probation service for breaching the good behaviour terms of his licence.

Later the same year he was cautioned for possession of cocaine after he was found with a small amount of the class A drug.

Press Association

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