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Pelka murder conviction pair appeal

A couple convicted of the murder of four-year-old Daniel Pelka are having appeals heard by leading judges today.

His mother Magdelena Luczak and stepfather Mariusz Krezolek were sentenced to life in August last year and ordered to serve at least 30 years each behind bars before they can apply for parole.

A judge at Birmingham Crown Court said that "unimaginable acts of cruelty and brutality" were inflicted on the child.

The pair, originally from Poland, were convicted of murder after blaming each other for the head injury which ultimately caused his death.

Daniel weighed just 1 stone 9lbs when he died in March 2012. During his final months, he was denied food, forced to perform punishment exercises, confined in a locked box room, poisoned with salt, and subjected to water torture.

Luczak wants to challenge her sentence, while former soldier Krezolek is attempting to appeal against both conviction and sentence.

Their cases will be heard at the Court of Appeal in London by Lady Justice Hallett, Mr Justice Popplewell and Mr Justice Edis.

When sentencing the couple, from Coventry, trial judge Mrs Justice Cox told them: "Time and again, knowing exactly what you were doing to him, both of you concealed your conduct from the authorities by a series of deliberate and elaborate lies, designed to put them off the scent and to prevent them discovering Daniel's true plight.''

Accepting that Daniel appeared to be a healthy and well cared for little boy when he started school in September 2011, the judge told his killers: ''Over the months that followed, he was subjected by both of you to deliberate, escalating and incomprehensible brutality, which continued right up to his death.

''For reasons which are unfathomable, Daniel became a target for derision, abuse and systematic cruelty, designed to cause him significant mental and physical suffering. The scale of his suffering was truly horrific.''

The medical evidence given during the case, the judge said, showed that Daniel's emaciation was regarded by experts as ''unprecedented'' in Britain.

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