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Two inmates stabbed Sarah Payne's killer in the neck in prison cell attack

Will Taylor
·News Reporter
·2-min read
Whiting, left, was attacked at Wakefield Prison, right. (PA)
Whiting, left, was attacked at Wakefield Prison, right. (PA)

Two murderers who attacked the notorious killer of Sarah Payne have had their jail terms extended.

Roy Whiting was set upon in a cell by Richard Prendergast and Kevin Hyden, who were armed with makeshift weapons, in D Wing of maximum security Wakefield Prison, Leeds Crown Court heard.

Prendergast, 40, had two pieces of wood with a 6.7cm screw sticking out between them while Hyden, also 40, used a screw, the court was told.

Read more: Schoolgirl Sarah Payne's killer Roy Whiting demands new prison mattress

Jonathan Sharp, prosecuting, said one of the convicted murderers shouted “you f****** nonce” and “stab him, get him in the neck” as they stabbed and punched him multiple times during the attack in November 2018.

Both are serving life in prison for murders. Hyden got 32 years for torturing and killing a 59-year-old female neighbour as he looked for drug money.

Undated picture of Roy Whiting, 42, who has been found guilty by a jury at Lewes Crown Court of kidnapping and murdering Sarah Payne, who was snatched on July 1 last year from a country lane near her grandparents' home in Kingston Gorse, West Sussex.   * Her body was found 16 days later in a shallow grave off the A29 road in Pulborough.     24/11/02: Home Secretary David Blunkett has ruled he must serve half a century before being eligible for parole. The decision effectively means Whiting, 43, will die in jail. Whiting, a mechanic from Littlehampton, West Sussex, is locked up in maximum security Wakefield Prison after being jailed last December. He murdered Sarah after snatching her from a cornfield near her grandparents  house in Kingston Gorse, west Sussex.
Roy Whiting, 42, was convicted of Sarah Payne's murder. (PA)

Prendergast was given a minimum of 19 years in 2018 for the murder of a 44-year-old man he falsely accused of stealing his phone.

Both admitted causing Whiting grievous bodily harm earlier this week.

During the prison attack, Whiting was pulled up by his hair and beaten for a minute as prison officers arrived to break up the fight with batons.

Read more: Call for reform of Sarah’s Law as more parents told of paedophile risk

The child killer received puncture wounds to his head, neck and upper body, the court heard.

Sharp said Prendergast said he committed the attack to get moved from the wing because he didn’t want to be in with offenders against children.

The court heard Hyden boasted about it and said he did “what everyone else wanted to do”, though this could have been “opportunistic bravado” to boost his prison status.

Sarah Payne was eight when she was murdered. (PA)
Sarah Payne was eight when she was murdered. (PA)

Judge Tom Bayliss QC jailed both defendants for seven-and-a-half years, and said it mattered “not a jot” what the motivation for attacking Whiting was, saying his notoriety was “irrelevant”.

He said this means that because offenders usually serve two-thirds of a sentence, they will have to add an extra five years to their minimum jail terms.

Convicted paedophile Roy Whiting murdered Sarah Payne in 2000.

She was abducted from a beach in Kingston Gorse, West Sussex, in July that year, having been playing near her grandparents’ home.

Her body was found in nearby Pulborough 17 days later. Whiting’s jail sentence runs out in 2041.

The murder led to Sarah’s Law, or the Child Sex Offender Disclosure Scheme.

It allows parents to ask police to check if anyone with access to their children has been convicted or suspected of child abuse.

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