Daniel Pelka murder: Pair given 30 years each

A REMORSELESS couple have both been jailed for at least 30 years for murdering a four-year-old schoolboy after “unimaginable” acts of cruelty and brutality.

Mrs Justice Cox told Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek they had inflicted horrific suffering on Daniel Pelka, who was starved for at least six months before being beaten to death.

Sentencing the pair following their trial at Birmingham Crown Court, the judge told the Polish nationals: “Over the nine weeks of acutely distressing evidence, I have not observed a single sign of genuine remorse at any stage from either of you.”

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Daniel’s mother and stepfather were unanimously convicted of murder on Wednesday after blaming each other for the head injury which ultimately caused his death.

Jurors heard how Daniel was systematically starved under the noses of medical professionals and his teachers at Coventry’s Little Heath Primary School.

Eleven of the 12 jurors who found Luczak and Krezolek guilty of murder returned to the court yesterday to see them ­receive mandatory life terms.

One of the jurors wiped away tears as the judge described the ill-treatment of Daniel during her sentencing remarks.

Luczak and Krezolek stared straight ahead and listened to their interpreters in the dock, as the judge told them: “As the trial has progressed, harrowing details of the unimaginable acts of cruelty and brutality inflicted on little Daniel, over many months, have exposed both the torment and despair he must have suffered and your callous disregard for his pain and distress.

“Time and again, knowing exactly what you were doing to him, both of you concealed your conduct from the authorities by a series of deliberate and elaborate lies, designed to put them off the scent and to prevent them discovering Daniel’s true plight.”

The judge added that a determination to lie and to protect themselves at all costs had been the “hallmark” of the defendants’ conduct during their campaign of cruelty.

Daniel, whose body weighed 1st 9lb, died on 3 March last year, two days after being attacked by Krezolek and subjected to water torture and salt poisoning.

During the 30-hour period in which Daniel lay dying, Luczak, 27, and Krezolek, 34, chose not to call an ambulance, instead opting to carry on with their day-to-day lives.

Accepting that Daniel appeared to be a healthy and well cared for little boy when he started school in September 2011, the judge told Luczak and Krezolek: “Over the months that followed, he was subjected by both of you to deliberate, escalating and incomprehensible brutality, which continued right up to his death.

“For reasons which are unfathomable, Daniel became a target for derision, abuse and systematic cruelty, designed to cause him significant mental and physical suffering. The scale of his suffering was truly ­horrific.”

Evidence that Daniel had been regularly “imprisoned” for prolonged periods of time in a small unheated box room was also presented to the couple’s trial.

The door to the room had been adapted by Krezolek so that Daniel, whose emaciated frame was likened to that of a famine victim, could not escape or even see out of the keyhole.

Referring to forensic evidence found on the door, Mrs Justice Cox went on: “The small hand and finger marks on the inside of that door provided a poignant image of his desperate ­attempts to escape.

“It is a particularly grave ­aggravating feature in this case that, before the fatal blows to his head, Daniel was the ­victim of chronic and systematic ­starvation. Both of you deliberately deprived him of food.”