Headmaster's killer appeals against murder conviction

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The Independent Online
The teenage gang leader who stabbed to death the London headmaster Philip Lawrence outside his school nearly two years ago is appealing against his conviction today. Learco Chindamo, 17, was ordered to be detained indefinitely after a jury at the Old Bailey found him guilty of the murder.

Chindamo, who was 15 when he knifed Mr Lawrence, puncturing his lung and piercing his heart, was a member of the Wo-Sing-Wo gang, which aspired to be the juvenile equivalent of the Triads. Just days before the murder, he was named in court as an accomplice in the near fatal knife attack on the husband of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Dame Barbara Mills.

On 8 December 1995, up to 12 youths in the gang led by Chindamo went to St George's Roman Catholic School in Maida Vale, west London, to attack a boy who had quarrelled with a pupil of Filipino origin. When Mr Lawrence tried to protect one of his pupils he was punched and stabbed by Chindamo and died the same evening. The killing shocked the country and focused attention on violence in schools and the safety of teachers. It led to an amnesty on knives and new restrictions on their sale.

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