Family anger as double killer wins legal challenge in bid for cosmetic surgery

The daughter of a murdered couple has told of her revulsion after their killer won a legal challenge over his right to have a birthmark removed from his face while in prison.

In the two decades that have passed since her pensioner parents were murdered as they slept in their Newhaven home Linda Appleby has maintained a dignified and stoic silence.

Her only public utterance was a desperate plea for witnesses to come forward in the dark and pain-filled days after the vicious murder on July 22, 1989.

It had been a brutal and savage attack during which Mrs Appleby’s 74-year-old mother Iris Hadler, who suffered from dementia, was sexually assaulted and stabbed 11 times and her father Stephen, 76 and partially paralysed after a stroke, was knifed 23 times as he bravely fought to save his wife.

When Denis Roberts was convicted and sentenced to life two years later for what the judge, Mr Justice Wright, described at his trial as ”two of the most horrible murders it was possible to imagine,” Mrs Appleby had, if nothing else, the relief of knowing that justice had been done.

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