Caroline's murderer to appeal

The killer of Cornish schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson, raped and murdered on a school trip to France nearly eight years ago, is to appeal, police have said.

The killer of Cornish schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson, raped and murdered on a school trip to France nearly eight years ago, is to appeal, police have said.

Spanish waiter Francisco Arce Montes, 54, was jailed for 30 years at a court in Rennes, Brittany, last week for murdering the 13-year-old.

Montes attacked her in the early hours of July 18, 1996, as she slept on the floor of a youth hostel dormitory in Pleine Fougeres, Brittany.

Caroline was among 41 youngsters from Launceston Community College, Cornwall, on an activity holiday.

Her mother Sue, 46, from Launceston, and her 48-year-old father John, from Bodmin, Cornwall, have been informed that Montes had lodged an appeal against his conviction for murder.

The family said in a statement after hearing of the development: "We are angry and very upset to learn of the appeal that has been lodged and that our wish to begin the process of rebuilding our lives is now, yet again, on hold.

"However our commitment to ensure justice for Caroline remains steadfast and we intend to be present at any retrial when and wherever that may be."

The French justice system allows everyone an automatic right to appeal.

The retrial will be at least six months after the original trial but will probably be in eight to 12 months time, said the police.

It will not be at Rennes but will be within Brittany.

There will be 12 jurors at the retrial and three judges.

It is not yet known if witnesses will have to attend the retrial, said the police.

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