Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 23 November 2014

Parents 'pleased' as killer jailed

Robert Black must serve a minimum of 25 years for murdering schoolgirl Jennifer Cardy in 1981
Robert Black must serve a minimum of 25 years for murdering schoolgirl Jennifer Cardy in 1981
Collect picture of Jennifer Cardy provided by the PSNI.
Jennifer Cardy, who was murdered by serial killer Robert Black 30 years ago
Jennifer Cardy
Andrew Cardy father of murdered school girl Jennifer Cardy leaves Armagh Court House yesterday as convicted Scottish killer Robert Black was found guilty of the young girl
Robert Black
Jennifer Cardy was snatched as she cycled to a friend's house in the quiet Co Antrim village of Ballinderry on August 12, 1981
Jennifer's father Andy and mother Pat comfort each other outside the court.
A petrol receipt belonging to serial killer Robert Black which was used as evidence in his trial for the murder of Jennifer Cardy.
Eleven year old Susan Maxwell who disappeared and was murdered in 1982 by Robert Black Serial killer Robert Black
Undated handout photo of ten year old Sarah Harper who vanished from Morley, near Leeds on March 26th 1986, and was murdered by Robert Black
UK PROVINCIAL USE ONLY. ALL TV, FOREIGNS, NATIONALS (INC REGIONAL EDITIONS) OUT. BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE: Undated handout photo of murdered schoolgirl Caroline Hogg as her murderer Robert Black has today been found guilty at Armagh Crown Court of kidnapping and murdering schoolgirl Jennifer Cardy in August 1981. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Thursday October 27, 2011. See PA story ULSTER Cardy. Photo credit should read: PA WireNOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Victoria Cardy, sister of murdered schoolgirl Jennifer Cardy, leaves Armagh court house. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday October 26, 2011. The jury in serial killer Robert Black's latest murder trial has been sent home for the day after failing to reach a verdict after almost three hours of deliberations. See PA story ULSTER Cardy. Photo credit should read: Paul Faith/PA Wire
Detectives examining bike which was found thrown over hedge on roadside (on Crumlin Rd, Ballinderry) . 13/8/81
Robert Black appears at Lisburn Magistrates Court charged with the murder of nine-year-old Jennifer Cardy in August 1981
Parents Andrew and Patricia Cardy leave Armagh Courthouse

The parents of a murdered schoolgirl spoke words of forgiveness after the serial child killer who took their daughter's life was told he would be jailed until he was at least 89.

Robert Black, now 64, and originally from Scotland, was told he must serve a minimum 25 years for murdering nine-year-old Jennifer Cardy, who was snatched as she cycled to a friend's house in Ballinderry, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, in 1981.

The murderer, who has been convicted of killing four young girls and is being investigated over a fifth disappearance, is now serving at least 12 life sentences at Wakefield Prison.

This includes the jail terms for murder and kidnapping handed down by Mr Justice Ronald Weatherup at Belfast Crown Court, which effectively added a further seven years to the date at which Black could be considered for release.

The former delivery driver abducted Jennifer while on a work trip to Northern Ireland and dumped her body in water close to the main Belfast-Dublin road near Hillsborough, Co Antrim, before catching a ferry home.

Mr Justice Weatherup, who earlier heard the killer's own lawyer offer no plea for mercy, said it was a "wicked deed".

Outside the court, Jennifer's parents, Andy and Pat, said they were satisfied that, in real terms, Black would spend the rest of his life behind bars.

Mr Cardy said his family's faith in God sustained them, adding: "It has been an emotional couple of hours. It has been a long, long journey. It has been 30 years of a journey."

Of the sentence, he said: "We are very, very pleased. We think that justice has been done. We don't think Robert Black will ever be out of jail again to assault wee girls. He will never be able to torture little girls."

Black was convicted of Jennifer's murder in October following a six-week trial at Armagh Crown Court.

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