Mum of Olivia Pratt-Korbel condemns Lucy Letby failure to attend sentencing

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Olivia’s killer, Thomas Cashman, refused to attend his sentencing hearing at Liverpool Crown Court.

The mother of Olivia Pratt-Korbel said her heart goes out to the families of Lucy Letby’s victims after the murderous nurse refused to show up for sentencing.

Letby was sentenced to a whole life order on Monday (August 21) after being found guilty last week of murdering seven babies and attempting to kill six further infants in her care at Countess of Chester Hospital’s neonatal unit between 2015 and 2016.

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Letby was not present for the sentencing hearing at Manchester Crown Court, joining several other high-profile killers who refused to appear in the dock.

Olivia Pratt-Korbel’s killer, Thomas Cashman, was sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 42 years but was also not present for his sentencing earlier this year, and Olivia’s mother, Cheryl Korbel described his absence as ‘like a kick in the teeth’.

One year on from Olivia’s tragic death, she has spoken out against Lucy Letby and once again reiterated the importance of killers facing the families of their victims.

Ms Korbel said her ‘heart goes out to the families’ of Letby’s victims and discussed the difficulty go going through a court case and not having the chance to go ‘eye to eye’ with the offender.

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She continued: “It’s important for the families. I mean, my personal experience. Writing the impact statement was really hard. It wasn’t going to take minutes. It was days over a matter of weeks.

The tragic murder of Olivia Pratt-Korbel, sent shockwaves not just through Merseyside, but across the country and beyondThe tragic murder of Olivia Pratt-Korbel, sent shockwaves not just through Merseyside, but across the country and beyond
The tragic murder of Olivia Pratt-Korbel, sent shockwaves not just through Merseyside, but across the country and beyond | Family Handout

“And it’s important for the offenders to listen to the pain that they’ve caused, the pain that is ongoing.”

Calls for new law

Calls for killers to be forced to appear in court increased after Cashman refused to appear in the dock back in April and Ian Byrne, Member of Parliament for West Derby, is urging for work to begin on changing the law, which could include giving judges the power to impose longer terms on those who stay in their cells.

Speaking after Lucy Letby’s sentencing, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the Government is looking at changing the law and said it’s ‘cowardly’ for killers to refuse to face their victims’ families.