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One of UK's roughest prisons awaits Karen Buckley's killer Pacteau

By Ralph Riegel

Published 09/09/2015

Karen Buckley's killer Alexander Pacteau
Karen Buckley's killer Alexander Pacteau

With an almost imperceptible nod of his head, killer Alexander Pacteau (21) said goodbye to his youth.

Dressed in a grey suit and white tie, Pacteau was flanked by two prison officers and was before Justice Lady Rae in Glasgow High Court for his murder sentencing hearing for less than 18 minutes.

When Pacteau is finally released from his life sentence for the horrific murder of Karen Buckley in 2038, he will be 44 years old.

His youth will be nothing more than a fading memory.

And by 2038, he will have spent more than half his life behind bars.

Instead of the bright future promised by his privileged upbringing and attendance at one of Glasgow's most prestigious schools, Pacteau will spend the next quarter century in one of Europe's toughest prisons.

Instead of launching business ventures as he had planned when he briefly attended Anniesland College, Pacteau will be hoping that he can eventually emerge from the special protection measures he currently has in Barlinnie Prison and enter one of the jail's education and work programmes.

Because of the nature and violence of his crime, Pacteau currently has to be protected from other inmates in Barlinnie.

Pacteau's barrister, John Scullion QC, repeated to the High Court that his client was very sorry for what he had done in the early hours of April 12 when he bludgeoned an unsuspecting Karen Buckley to death just minutes after she had left The Sanctuary nightclub.

Mr Scullion acknowledged that Pacteau's actions in trying to dispose of Karen's body was "despicable and beneath contempt".

And yesterday, at least in terms of his physical actions, Pacteau offered little sign of remorse.

The burly former grammar school boy, who weighs almost 15 stone, never turned around in the South Court of Glasgow's High Court to view the devastation he had wrought on a tight-knit Irish farming family.

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