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Teenager convicted of 'sadistic' attack could now go to university, judge told

One of two teenage brothers convicted of a "sadistic" attack on two boys seven years ago is now a "completely different" person and could go to university, a senior judge has been told.

The man, who turned 18 earlier this month, told judge Sir Geoffrey Vos how he felt that he had become "the opposite of that person who did the crimes".

He said he "fully acknowledged" the "extreme gravity of his offences".

Sir Geoffrey was told that the man's older brother, now 19, was "equally committed to the path of rehabilitation".

Detail of the brothers' hopes and ambitions emerged on Monday.

Sir Geoffrey had made orders barring journalists from revealing the brothers' identities earlier this month at a High Court hearing in London.

He has now published a written ruling explaining his reasoning for making those orders.

Evidence relating to the brothers' states of minds featured in the ruling.

The brothers were 10 and 11 when they took part in the attack in Edlington, South Yorkshire, in 2009.

Their victims were nine and 11.

Newspapers labelled the brothers as "Devil Boys", "Hell Boys" and "Torture Bruvs".

Both were given custodial terms after admitting causing grievous bodily harm.

The judge who sentenced them described the attack as "sadistic violence".

They have now been given new identities and are no longer in custody.

Sir Geoffrey said he was satisfied that the anonymity order was in the public interest.

He said neither the brothers' original names nor their new identities could be revealed in media reports of the case.

A barrister representing the brothers had asked the judge to grant anonymity.

Phillippa Kaufmann QC was instructed by staff from the Official Solicitor's office, which helps vulnerable people involved in court cases.

She said evidence showed that there was a ''real possibility'' that the brothers would be attacked by vigilantes if their names became known.

The application had been made as the younger brother approached his 18th birthday.

It was not formally opposed by any media organisation - although a reporter covering the hearing had argued that journalists should be allowed to reveal the brothers' original names.

Another judge had already granted the pair anonymity until they were 18.

Sir Geoffrey said the younger brother had made "his own statement".

"He fully acknowledged the extreme gravity of his offences, and said compellingly that he now feels inside like a completely different person," said the judge in his ruling.

"He said that, '(it) has taken a long time to get there and I have done loads of work with professionals in secure to work through what I did and why I did it.

" 'I now feel like I have become the opposite to that person who did the crimes.

" 'I desperately want to carry on being the person I have become.

" 'I want to get a job or may be even go to uni'."

Sir Geoffrey added: "The other evidence before me suggests that (his) ambitions may be genuinely capable of realisation."

He went on: "I have no doubt that (the older brother) is equally committed to the path of rehabilitation."

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