Spree killer Joanne Dennehy 'had sadistic lust for blood'

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Media captionDennehy was laughing in court ahead of sentencing, as Jo Black reports

"Cruel, calculating and manipulative" triple killer Joanne Dennehy has been given a whole-life prison sentence.

Dennehy, described by the judge at the Old Bailey as having a "sadistic lust for blood", is only the third woman to be handed such a term.

The 31-year-old, of Orton Goldhay in Peterborough, murdered Lukasz Slaboszewski, 31, Kevin Lee, 48, and John Chapman, 56, in March last year.

Mr Justice Spencer also described the defendant as "a pathological liar".

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Image caption Joanna Dennehy (right) stood in the dock with Gary Stretch (2nd left), Leslie Layton (5th left), Robert Moore (centre) and prison officers

Killers Myra Hindley and Rosemary West are the only other women to be handed a whole-life tariff.

One of Dennehy's accomplices, Gary Stretch, 47, has been jailed for life and will serve a minimum of 19 years.

'Killing was moreish'

Dennehy had also admitted the attempted murders of two other men in Hereford.

Mr Justice Spencer told her: "The death and destruction for which you are responsible has caused untold distress to the families of the men you murdered and to the men you attacked."

He added that she told a psychiatrist: "I killed to see how I would feel, to see if I was as cold as I thought I was, then it got moreish."

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Media captionEd Thomas meets those involved in the case

As she was sentenced, Dennehy, who had been laughing during the earlier part of the hearing, showed no emotion and stood in the dock with her eyes closed.

Mr Justice Spencer told her she had murdered the three men in "cold blood".

He said: "You have shown no genuine remorse; quite the reverse. You have written to me saying you feel no remorse for the murders."

The power to set minimum terms in life sentence cases used to rest with the Home Secretary.

In Hindley's case, that was David Waddington; in Rosemary West's case, it was Jack Straw.

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Media captionThe brother-in-law of victim Kevin Lee described Dennehy as a "monster"

'Eager to help'

Stretch received his life term for the attempted murders of Robin Bereza and John Rogers in Hereford.

He and Dennehy's other accomplice, Leslie Layton, 37, were convicted of a number of charges of helping her, after a trial at Cambridge Crown Court earlier this month.

Layton was jailed for a total of 14 years for preventing lawful and decent burial and perverting the course of justice.

A third man, Robert Moore, 55, of Belvoir Way, Peterborough, was jailed for three years for assisting Dennehy.

Following Dennehy's sentencing, Mr Slaboszewski's family said: "Lukasz was a sensitive person and was always eager to help others.

"Not only was he friendly to everyone, he always made everyone laugh. Our life will not be the same without him and we truly miss him."

Dennehy had been having an affair with Mr Lee, who was her landlord and boss.

His widow Christina was in court with their children Chiara, 25, and Dino, 15, and about 20 other family members in a show of solidarity.

Afterwards they said in a statement: "We feel Joanne Dennehy brainwashed Kevin, causing him to make a bad decision, and he has paid for that with his life."

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