Prisoner serving life sentence sends speculative letter to singing student who 'touched his heart'

Johnnie Allen was convicted of a drugs plot in 1997 and murder six years later

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The Independent Online

A prisoner who was convicted of a £8 million drugs plot more than 18 years ago and murder six years later reached out to a student he saw on television in a letter that has been described by her as having left her “shaken”.

The Cambridge University student – who remains anonymous – was contacted by Johnnie Allan, 55, who hand-wrote a letter stating that he was impressed and “touched” by her televised choir performance on Christmas Eve, The Tab reported.

Allan was found guilty of a multi-million pound drug plot in 1997 and also convicted of shooting a fellow suspect dead. He is serving life sentence and currently resides in maximum security HMP Long Lartin in Worcestershire.

In the letter made available to the student newspaper, he said: “I found you tweaking my imagination after seeing and hearing your beautiful reading at King’s College which touched my heart.

“And trapped inside my concrete cube I decided to send you this speculative (almost message-in-a-bottle) type letter, taking the million-to-one chance you might be interested to bounce ideas, despite the negative image associated with where I currently live.

“This message could: a) Spark off a stimulating connection; b) Make you turn my envelope into a paper aeroplane floating into your wastebin.”

He also jokes: “As cells go this one is long enough for facing up and down inside. I can take three steps forward and three steps back. But enough of my sales pitch, as I doubt I can convince you to swap places?”

The second year student at King’s had told The Tab: “I was in a state of shock at first. I’ve just about got over it now and find it funny. But I do worry for my safety.”

Allan said that he writes letters to keep his mind off the monotony of prison life in which he claims he spends most days counting the bricks of his cell walls – 142 on each side apparently – contemplating the existence of god and thinking about his past.

However this is not the first time that Allan, who is listed on website Pen Pals Behind Bars, has been in contact with women as he engaged in a four-year letter-writing relay with billionaire heiress Eva Rausing who died in May 2012 allegedly from a drug addiction.

She told him she was fearing for her life due to beliefs she had over the assassination of Swedish prime minister Olof Palme in 1986, according to Daily Mail. Allan contacted the coroner to claim that Rausing’s death may have been a conspiracy, the newspaper claims.

The inmate then signs off the letter asking the student about her studies and what she likes to do. The last words of the letter read: “Right, the ball’s in your court now. Please write if the feeling takes you. Que sera sera. Over to you. Best wishes regardless, Johnnie.”