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Essex lorry deaths: Truck driver Mo Robinson 'haunted' by memory of his crime

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Killer haulier Maurice Robinson

Killer haulier Maurice Robinson

Killer haulier Maurice Robinson

Mass killer truck driver Mo Robinson has needed special counselling after he was haunted by his terrible crime, Sunday World has revealed.

Sources close to the greedy 26-year-old say he was traumatised after discovering 39 bodies in the back of the trailer he’d just collected at Purfleet, Essex, in October last year.

Earlier this year Sunday World revealed how racist Robinson had pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of the Vietnamese migrants just a few days after his partner had given birth to twins.

It can be revealed Robinson has met his daughters who have made a number of visits.

A source told the Sunday World: “Seeing his kids is the only thing keeping him going.”

But it has now emerged Robinson, who is languishing in Belmarsh Category A Prison in London, requested mental health support in the aftermath of his grisly discovery.

“Mo is being haunted by the mental images of what he found in the back of his trailer,” said a former friend.

“He was suffering badly, having nightmares and losing sleep because he’d seen all the bodies lying down and he couldn’t get the image out of his head.

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Lorry driver Maurice Robinson has pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to 39 counts of manslaughter

Lorry driver Maurice Robinson has pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to 39 counts of manslaughter

Lorry driver Maurice Robinson has pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to 39 counts of manslaughter

“The prison had to get him help because they have a duty of care to him. That’s the irony – Mo was part of a smuggling gang that killed those poor people, yet he needed grief counselling to recover.

“I don’t think Mo ever considered the consequences of what he was doing – he was just thinking about the money.”

The former pal says while Robinson was well aware of what he was doing, he’s no hardened criminal and has found life behind bars “extremely tough”.

“Mo comes from a highly respected family – people round Portadown still can’t believe he made his living doing this kind of thing,” they said.

“He got in with a bad crowd and just got very greedy. He’s found the whole thing very traumatic.

“The only thing keeping him going is the fact he’s got to see his newborn twin daughters. His partner Jill gave birth not long before he pleaded guilty.

“She was furious with him and let it be known to everyone in her hair salon that she had distanced herself from him.

“But she’s realised the kids need to see their dad even if he won’t be getting out of jail for much of their childhood.”

Robinson had stood to make around £50,000 for the single delivery but his people smuggling bosses Ronan Hughes from Co Monaghan and Romanian Gheorghe Nica (39) had agreed to packing too many people into the trailer for them to be able to survive the ferry crossing from Belgium.

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Court artist sketch of Mo Robinson (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

Court artist sketch of Mo Robinson (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Court artist sketch of Mo Robinson (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

This week Nica and Eamonn Harrison (24) from Newry became the seventh and eighth people to be convicted of being involved in the deadly smuggling operation. Harrison had dropped off the trailer at the Belgian port.

It’s understood three more suspects could face prosecution next year in connection with the deaths of the migrants, who are believed to have paid around £13,000 each for a so-called ‘VIP’ treatment.

This week a recording of Robinson’s call to the emergency services was released to the public and Robinson could be heard saying he was too scared to look in the trailer to see how many there were exactly.

After finding the 39 bodies, he did not phone the emergency services immediately, he phoned his boss Ronan Hughes.

It was more than 20 minutes later that he dialed 999 to call for help. When he finally did he told the operator about the people in the container.

“They’re all lying on the ground,” he said. But when asked how old they were, he replied: “I don’t really want to look in, to be honest with you.”

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Maurice Robinson

Maurice Robinson

PA

Maurice Robinson

He couldn’t face what he’d done but it’s understood Robinson was shown images of inside the trailer during his police interviews and he soon admitted his full part in the smuggling operation.

Ronan Hughes (41) and Robinson had previously admitted the manslaughter of the migrants.

Lorry driver Christopher Kennedy (24), from Keady, Co Armagh, who collected the trailers from Purfleet on two successful runs, claimed he thought he was transporting cigarettes, but was found guilty of conspiring to assist illegal immigration.

Mo’s luxury home near Gosford Forest Park, in Markethill, was raided by police two days after he was arrested in England as were other properties connected to the truck driver.

In April we revealed how Robinson had expressed shocking racist views on social media and in one post even chillingly moaned about migrants coming here “stuffed in the back of a lorry”.

All of the eight convicted will be sentenced over three days starting on January 7 and Robinson faces at least 15 years in jail.

Sunday World


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