Home News ‘Passive’ evil killer father agrees to release body of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes for...

‘Passive’ evil killer father agrees to release body of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes for funeral


The evil child killer who with his partner was found guilty of the murder of the six-year-old boy has remained “passive” on the issue. He now hoped the decision would provide a “tiny scrap of peace” to Arthur’s mum Olivia Labinjo-Halcrow, his lawyer said.

Stepmother Emma Tustin, 32, was jailed for life at Coventry Crown Court on Friday, with a minimum term of 29 years, after being found guilty of the boy’s murder, while his father, Thomas Hughes, 29, was sentenced to 21 years for manslaughter.

Already, fellow inmates have sought to attack Ms Tustin, with a warning message of salt being poured into her prison food, referring to the high levels of sodium found in young Arthur’s body at the time of his death.

The Government has announced a major review into the circumstances which led to the murder, aiming to determine what improvements are needed by the agencies that came into contact with Arthur before his death.

The National Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel will lead the review and will provide additional support to Solihull Children’s Safeguarding Partnership.

It emerged in court the boy had been seen by social workers just two months before his death, but they concluded there were “no safeguarding concerns”.

When the pair were sentenced on Friday, it was confirmed Arthur had yet to be laid to rest.

Arthur’s natural mother Olivia Labinjo-Halcrow was jailed for killing her then partner in 2019, leaving Hughes in the sole custody of their son.

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It was her arrest and remand into custody in February 2019 that led to Arthur falling into the care of Hughes.

In an emotional statement, read by her mother Madeleine Halcrow, Arthur’s grandmother, she said her life had been “destroyed” by her son’s death.

She added: “Now over a year on my beautiful boy has still not been laid to rest. He is still alone and cold; the people who took him refuse to show compassion and allow his little body to be released to me, his mother; to finally let him rest peacefully and warm.”

The statement continued: “Burying my beloved son is the final thing I will ever be able to do for him. The waiting is torture and even though I try to stop myself every night when I get into a warm bed, my heart breaks all over again at the thought of my Arthur alone in the cold.”

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Bernard Richmond QC, barrister for Hughes, said a “degree of passivity” was part of his client’s character and he had not been “standing up” for the things he should have.

He told the court Hughes had left the issue of Arthur’s remains to his family and Ms Labinjo-Halcrow’s family to resolve but they had not been able to agree.

Mr Richmond added: “I have spoken to him and said this can’t go on.

“He has instructed me to say that Arthur’s remains, after a service with his family, must go to his mother’s family for her to have a funeral and she must have control of his ashes.”

The lawyer added: “He does hope he can give Olivia a tiny scrap of peace.”
Arthur’s grandmother Madeleine Halcrow was among a large crowd of people who on Sunday afternoon gathered outside the house in Cranmore Road, Solihull, where the child was killed, to pay tribute.

She could be seen wiping away tears at the vigil while wearing a T-shirt bearing his face.

The crowd lined the road before letting go of the balloons, some bearing messages, and applauding.

Residents, some with tears in their eyes, could be heard saying “bye Arthur” and “fly high always”.

They then formed a line outside the house before balloons, posters and flowers were placed around the property.

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