‘Our 32-year living death because of evil monster’

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The families of Nicola Fellows and Karen Hadaway have described killer Russell Bishop as a “monster” and “evil personified”.

The girls’ distraught loved-ones spoke out about their 32-year “living death” as Bishop was finally brought to justice for the 1986 murders.

Speaking outside the Old Bailey, Michelle Hadaway, Karen’s mother, said: “After 32 years of fighting, we finally have justice for Karen and Nicola.

“Time stood still for us in 1986. To us them beautiful girls will always be nine years old. They will never grow up.

Russell Bishop court case
Michelle Hadaway, the mother of Karen Hadaway, looking on as Russell Bishop sits in the dock at the Old Bailey, London. (Elizabeth Cook/PA_

“Kas and Nicky, as they were affectionately known, friends playing out together only to have their lives wiped out by a sexual deviant, a monster.

“What’s been hard, horrendous and heart-breaking is to hear that they were murdered by a disgusting paedophile, who we actually knew and them two girls liked and trusted. He abused that trust.

“Bishop doesn’t deserve to breathe the same clean air as we do. After all, he decided that day to strangle the life out of our two angels, leaving them no air to breathe.

“What makes a man want to squeeze the life out of two innocent children with his bare hands? Unbelievable, when he had a child himself and another on the way.

“He’s a coward, without a conscience. I don’t believe you can rehabilitate evil. I think Bishop was just born that way.

“People talk to me of forgiveness, but I can never forgive or forget what that evil monster did to my beautiful Kaz and Nicky.

“I’m trying so hard to get my head around this but I will cos I’m a fighter and I’ll never stop being strong for my family.”

Anniversary of ‘babes in the wood’ murders
Michelle Hadaway and Sue Eismann at the scene in Wild Park, Brighton, East Sussex, where their daughters, Karen Hadaway and Nicola Fellows, were found murdered 20 years ago. (PA Archive)

“During the past eight weeks, we have endured re-living the horrific details of their murders and we have learned an awful lot about the true meaning of heartbreak all over again.

“We stand here as two families united in our grief. United in our fight for justice. And now united in our elation at today’s guilty verdict.

“We are extremely relieved and grateful that our 32 years hard fought battle has been a success, finally getting the rightful long-awaited justice for both of our girls.

“We want to thank our police teams and counsel, who have been fantastic during the past couple of decades.

“If it wasn’t for their efforts and dedication working with us, we wouldn’t be stood here today.

“Together we have changed history with this ‘double jeopardy’ ruling and we finally have the correct outcome – Russell Bishop remains behind bars where he belongs.

“The guilty verdict doesn’t bring Nicola & Karen back, but we know that other children are now safe from the hands of Russell Bishop.

“He is a monster. A predatory paedophile. Russell Bishop truly is evil personified.”

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