Thu. Jan 20th, 2022

Warnings about the murdered six-year-old Arthur Labinjo-Hughes were ignored, his grandfather has said.

Arthur’s stepmother Emma Tustin, 32, was found guilty of her murder at Coventry Crown Court on Friday and sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum period of 29 years.

Thomas Hughes, his father, 29, was jailed for 21 years for manslaughter.

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Balloons released by guard for Arthur in Solihull

Arthur’s grandfather, Peter Halcrow, said the boy’s other grandparents had issued warnings.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today program: “They are decent people and they were very worried. And the warnings that were issued were ignored, we must say.”

Halcrow said the couple responsible for Arthur’s death had committed a “heinous crime” by killing a “defenseless, innocent boy”.

He told the TV station: “I did not want to give them the time of day and I did not want them to see the light of day again.”

Arthur’s grandmother, Madeleine Halcrow, said the system that should have ensured he was safe is “broken”.

She told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “I’m angry at the inter-agencies because the communication somewhere along the line has not been passed on.

“The old adage ‘If it’s not broken, do not repair it’ … Well, something is broken in this system and something needs to be repaired.”

Emma Tustin and Thomas Hughes were found guilty of abusing and killing Hughes' six-year-old son
Emma Tustin and Thomas Hughes were found guilty of abusing and killing Hughes’ six-year-old son

She discussed the prison sentences for his killers and said, “Life should mean life. They took Arthur’s life, he will not get his life back, he will not have his own children.”

What led to the death of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, and could it have been prevented?

She said Tustin and Hughes had shown “no remorse, no sympathy”, branding them as “corrupt, sadistic, torturing, evil, calculating people”.

Arthur, from Solihull in the West Midlands, was left with an insurmountable brain injury while alone with Tustin.

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‘I am determined to get to the truth’

She was convicted of murder by assaulting him in the hallway of her home on Cranmore Road in Solihull on June 16, 2020. He died at the hospital the following day.

The trial heard that Arthur’s body was covered in 130 bruises and he had previously been poisoned, starved and beaten by Tustin and his father.

Arthur Labinjo-Hughes
Arthur’s body was covered in 130 bruises

Concerns were raised about his care and welfare throughout his case it has come to light.

His uncle said he sent police pictures of his nephew’s bruises and his grandmother had alerted the social services.

Two social workers visited Arthur’s home last year, but said they had “no protection issues”.

A national inquiry into Arthur’s death has been launched and the government has commissioned an urgent inspection of social care, health, police and probation in Solihull.

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