Oxford

Oxford school hired murderer Iria Suarez-Gonzalez as teaching assistant

West Oxford Community Primary School Image copyright Geograph
Image caption Iria Suarez-Gonzalez worked at West Oxford Community Primary School in 2016

A primary school unknowingly hired a murderer as a teaching assistant.

Iria Suarez-Gonzalez, who worked at West Oxford Community Primary School from September 2016 until July 2017, killed a school friend in Spain nearly 20 years ago.

She and another teenage girl stabbed their 16-year-old victim 32 times.

The 35-year-old did not tell the school about the stabbing and the conviction had been removed from her record, in line with Spanish law.

Oxfordshire County Council was contacted by police in October 2017, revealing that Suarez-Gonzalez had spent time in youth custody for killing Clara Garcia in 2000.

Image copyright Geograph
Image caption Oxfordshire County Council said the school had followed "safer recruitment processes"

In Spain, convictions can be removed from a person's record when they turn 28 if the crime took place when they were under 18.

Suarez-Gonzalez had been charged with fraud for not revealing the conviction to the school but on 10 June the case was dropped.

Last week, the Oxford Mail successfully challenged legal restrictions which had prevented the case from being reported.

The Crown Prosecution Service said it had seen files which showed Suarez-Gonzalez had murdered a teenager in Cadiz.

"In this instance, it emerged Ms Suarez-Gonzalez's conviction was spent which resulted in the charges being dropped," a spokesman said.

'Difficult time for school'

An Oxfordshire County Council spokesman said the primary school "followed safer recruitment processes".

"Police alerted us in October 2017, by which time she [Suarez-Gonzalez] had already left the school," they added.

"We know this has been a very difficult time for the school and parents.

"The school is in liaison with the council to continue to support students through the curriculum around feeling safe and knowing they have people that they can talk to in school if they need to."

The school has not commented.

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