PRISON SAYS SORRY TO MILLY'S FAMILY; Apology for sex attacker's threats over girl's murder.Byline: By JAMES GLOVER Crime Reporter
WALTON jail today apologised to the family of murdered teenager Milly Dowler after a sex attacker wrote threatening letters (Law) letters containing threats, especially those designed to extort money, or to obtain other property, by menaces; blackmailing letters.
See also: Threatening from his cell.
Milly, 13, was murdered after being snatched as she walked home from school near her home in Surrey in March, 2002, and no-one has ever been convicted of the killing.
But inmate Paul Hughes Paul Hughes (born 19 April 1976 in Hammersmith) is a retired English footballer who played in midfield.
Hughes began his career with his local side, Chelsea, and started well, scoring on his debut again Derby County with an impressive solo effort. , 36, sent poison pen letters to Milly's family, claiming he was the killer - and that he would kill again.
Prison staff check every letter out of the jail.
But a blunder by a junior member of staff at Walton allowed one of the sex attacker's letters to slip through the net.
Despite it having the wrong address, it found its way to the Dowlers' home where it was read by Milly's 18-yearold sister, Gemma 18.
Hughes was serving five years for an indecent assault indecent assault
a sexual attack which does not include rape
indecent assault n (BRIT) → in Merseyside in 2002 when he wrote up to 20 letters to the family, all but one of which were intercepted.
Police have been able to prove that, despite his confession to Milly's murder, he could not have committed the crime as he was 200 miles away at a probation office in Warrington at the time of the abduction.
Now he has been jailed for a further five years for making the threats to kill after he admitted the offences at Guildford crown court. After the Dowlers received the letter, prison bosses launched an inquiry. David Blunkett, Home Secretary at the time, phoned the family personally to apologise for the mistake.
The Home Office has since sent an 'unconditional and profuse pro·fuse
1. Plentiful; copious.
2. Giving or given freely and abundantly; extravagant: were profuse in their compliments. apology to the family', while Kathy James, Walton governor, has also written to the Dowlers expressing her regret over the incident.
A Home Office spokesman said: 'This was not acceptable.'
He said measures to stop letters from those whose behaviour or offences may pose a threat to members of the public even while in prison had failed
VICTIMS: Milly's mum Sally and her elder sister Gemma at the funeral