Racist killer of cellmate gets life for life

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The Independent Online

A prisoner who admired the killers of black teenager Stephen Lawrence was jailed for life yesterday for bludgeoning his Asian cellmate to death because he "felt like it".

A prisoner who admired the killers of black teenager Stephen Lawrence was jailed for life yesterday for bludgeoning his Asian cellmate to death because he "felt like it".

Robert Stewart, 20, clubbed Zahid Mubarek, 19, with a table leg as he slept. His cellmate, who was serving 90 days at the Feltham young offenders' institution in west London, was due to be released that day.

Mr Mubarek, jailed for shoplifting, died a week later of severe head injuries and brain damage. The Crown Prosecution Service is deciding if charges should be brought against Feltham staff over their failure to prevent the murder. Kingston Crown Court had heard that officers intercepted a racist letter from Stewart, of Hyde, Manchester, but did not separate the cellmates.

Stewart, who had admitted manslaughter with diminished responsibility, hurled abuse at the jury after he was convicted of murder. Sir John Nutting QC, for the prosecution, had described how Stewart wroteracist letters to friends before the attack.

Mr Mubarek's family later demanded a public inquiry into the Prison Service's role. The director general of the Prison Service, Martin Narey, apologised to the Mubarek family for a failure which was deeply regretted.

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