Justice system wrong, says brother of Trowbridge murder victim
The brother of murdered Trowbridge woman Hayley Richards said the family is devastated after finding out her killer Hugo Quintas had been deported back to Portugal to serve the rest of his sentence.
Pregnant Miss Richards, 23, was murdered by her former boyfriend Hugo Quintas in June 2005 at her home in Carders Corner.
He was jailed for life in 2006 after being convicted of her murder and ordered to serve a minimum of 18 years.
However, brother Paul Richards received a short two-paragraph letter last Tuesday from the Wiltshire Probation Trust, notifying him Quintas had been deported to serve the remainder of his sentence in his home country.
The family were given no prior notification that Hayley’s killer was to be deported from Wandsworth Prison and while Quintas will not be permitted to return to the UK, his release will now be according to the laws in Portugal.
Mr Richards, 52, from Hilperton, said the news was another kick in the teeth for the family, as the trial judge ruled Quintas should serve at least two thirds of his sentence in the UK.
The family will now have no say when he comes up for parole.
Mr Richards said they hadn’t been notified Quintas was to be deported. “We had no contact from anybody before we received this letter on Tuesday. When I rang the probation service up they said it was nothing to do with them.
“I told the rest of the family and they are absolutely devastated. If he was British we would have a say when he comes up for parole, but now he is in Portugal they could release him tomorrow and we wouldn’t even know about it. That is not right.
“Nothing is going to bring Hayley back, but this is just another kick in the teeth. David Cameron is always saying that families of people who are murdered have a voice, but we don’t.
“How are we going to feel if he gets released in a year’s time and goes and kills someone else? Hayley’s unborn daughter would have been eight now, so it was not one life but two that he took away from us.”
Quintas, who arrived in England from Porto in 2003, had tried to strangle his lover of 10 months after she threw him out of her flat six days before he eventually killed her.
She told officers she was “petrified” of her boyfriend and feared he would “go mad” if he found out she had reported him to the police, but officers failed to arrest Quintas.
The family of Miss Richards agreed to a financial settlement instead of taking Wiltshire Police to court in 2007, after the force admitted there had been failings in the lead up to her murder.
Mr Richards added: “We have been repeatedly let down from the very start. If the police had done their job properly in the first place I know that Hayley would still be here.
“There is clearly something wrong with the system.
“How can you find out your sister’s killer has gone just like that? I think it is an absolute disgrace and I want answers.
“Something needs to change as it’s not right that we were not told a thing.
"The trial judge said he would have to serve at least two thirds of his sentence here before he was extradited, so that is what should have happened.”
The family are now taking up their concerns with MP Andrew Murrison.
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