Killer told he may never be freed
An anti-paedophile vigilante who murdered a gay man he wrongly believed to be a child molester has been told he may never be released from prison.
Christopher Hunnisett, 28, killed supermarket worker Peter Bick, 57, just four months after being freed from jail following his acquittal for a vicar's murder. He was jailed for life with a minimum term of 18 years at Woolwich Crown Court in south-east London.
But the judge, Mr Justice Saunders, warned he was an "extremely dangerous man" who "may well kill again" if released in the foreseeable future. The judge said: "The time may never come when this defendant is considered safe to be released."
Hunnisett previously spent more than nine years in jail for killing the Rev Ronald Glazebrook, 81, in his bath and cutting up his body in April 2001. But his conviction was quashed and he was cleared of Mr Glazebrook's murder at a retrial during which he alleged that the priest sexually abused him.
After being freed from prison in September 2010, Hunnisett, of Hastings, East Sussex, made a "hit list" of men he planned to kill in his bid to rid the world of paedophiles.
Having formulated a plan to track down child abusers and rapists while he was in custody, on his release he set up false internet accounts as a "honeytrap" for sex offenders.
Mr Bick, an Asda employee from Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex, was at the top of Hunnisett's list of targets, although the prosecution said there was "not a shred of evidence" that he was a paedophile. Having split up from his long-term partner, the supermarket worker regularly used social networking and dating websites to meet young men for consensual sex, the trial heard.
Overnight on January 10-11 last year, Hunnisett had sex with Mr Bick at his flat before brutally smashing his head with five severe hammer blows and strangling him with a shoelace. The killer tried to cover his tracks by sending text messages falsely suggesting that the supermarket worker believed he was meeting a 15-year-old boy.
David Martin-Sperry, mitigating, said that while in prison Hunnisett was forced to play the role of an abuse victim in therapy sessions organised for sex offenders. He was then freed after being acquitted of Mr Glazebrook's murder without being prepared for his release and with no authority responsible for supervising him in the community.
Hunnisett, unshaven in a black and grey casual jacket, made no reaction as his sentence was passed, but mouthed a few words to family members in the public gallery as he was led away by court guards.