The Sentence: 'You showed no mercy and you show no regret. Your tears have only been for yourself'

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Mr Justive Moses ordered Ian Huntley to stand up in dock.

He told him: "Ian Kevin Huntley, on August 4 2002, you enticed two 10-year-old girls, Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, into your house. They were happy intelligent and loyal. They were much loved by their families and all who knew them. You murdered them both. You are the one person who knows how you murdered them. You are the one person who knows why.

"You destroyed the evidence but you showed no mercy and you show no regret. It is plain that once you killed one, you had to kill the other in your attempt to avoid detection.

"On August 10, but six days later, you told the BBC that you thought you might be the last friendly face that these two girls had to speak to. That was a lie which serves to underline the persistent cruelty of your actions. On the contrary, one of those girls died knowing her friend had been attacked or killed by you.

"After you had murdered them both, you pushed their bodies into a ditch, stripped them and burned them, while their families searched for them in increasing despair.

"And, as Kevin Wells called out their names, you pretended to join in the search. Three days later you demonstrated the extent of your merciless cynicism by offering that father some words of regret. Your tears have never been for them, only for yourself.

"In your attempts to escape responsibility in your lies, and your manipulation up to this day, you have increased the suffering you have caused two families.

"But it is not just those two families whose lives you have sought to destroy. Your crimes are those for which the community suffer. The children you murdered were children whose lives brought joy to the community and whose deaths brought grief.

"There is no greater task for the criminal justice system than to protect the vulnerable. There are few worse crimes than your murder of those two young girls."