Suffolk

Michael Simpson murder: Grandparents vow to keep siblings together

Simpson family Image copyright Andrew Simpson
Image caption Michael Simpson with his children Alice and Jack

The parents of a man killed by his Chinese wife will continue their bid to keep his children together after winning custody of just one of them.

Ian and Linda Simpson, from Suffolk, have agreed a custody deal to bring their granddaughter Alice, six, to the UK but her brother must stay in China.

Jack, eight, will stay with his maternal grandparents.

"We will continue do all we can to bring Jack as well as Alice back to Britain," the couple told the BBC.

Since the murder of their son Michael in 2017, by his wife Weiwei Fu, Jack and Alice have been living with their Chinese grandparents in Nanzhang, in a remote city in north-west China, unaware of what has happened to their mother or father.

The Simpsons wanted both children to live with them in Hartest but after a legal battle of nearly two years, it was agreed that Alice can return to the UK.

The couple also agreed to pay a financial settlement of nearly £10,000 to the family of their son's murderer.

In a statement issued to the BBC, the Simpsons said they were "delighted that Alice is coming home" and they hope to return to the UK on Friday after a visa has been issued for the youngster.

"She is talking to her brother and her grandparents every day on WeChat and is happy and ready for her big adventure, and an absolute joy to be with," they said.

"We are hugely grateful to the Chinese authorities, our lawyers in China, our friends and supporters, who have helped to make our granddaughter's return to England possible.

"However, we will continue do all we can to bring Jack as well as Alice back to Britain and to reunite our grandchildren, who love each other dearly."

Image copyright The Simpson Family
Image caption Ian Simpson, from Hartest, Suffolk, with his grandson Jack

Weiwei Fu is serving a life sentence for the murder of Mr Simpson, originally from Wimborne in Dorset, who died at his flat in Shanghai in March 2017.

An inquest in Bournemouth heard he was stabbed to death during a "heated argument" at the time when he was going through a "fairly acrimonious" divorce from his wife.

Image copyright The Simpson Family
Image caption Michael Simpson was going through a "fairly acrimonious" divorce from his wife before he was killed
Image caption Ian Simpson spoke to BBC Look East from Xiangyang where he and his wife have been attending a court hearing

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