Murderers of Vietnamese woman told they may never be released
Stephen Unwin and William McFall put Quyen Ngoc Nguyen through a four-hour ordeal.
Twisted killers who teamed up to commit murder again have been warned they face a whole life term for torturing a Vietnamese woman then torching her body in a car.
Maintenance men Stephen Unwin, 40, and William McFall, 51, put Quyen Ngoc Nguyen through an unimaginable four-hour ordeal after she was lured to Unwin’s home in Shiney Row, Tyne and Wear.
Unwin raped her and she was forced to hand over her PINs so they could raid £1,000 from her bank.
McFall even posed for a grinning selfie after the pair had committed their depraved and greed-fuelled crime.
He was cleared of the rape charge following the trial at Newcastle Crown Court.
It was the second time each had murdered, having both killed pensioners in the 1990s before they met in prison. Each served 13 years of a life sentence before they were released on licence.
Mr Justice Morris said mandatory life sentences will follow and he warned them they may be never be released.
He will set their minimum term at a hearing next month.
Firefighters discovered Ms Nguyen’s badly burned body in the back of her Audi after it had been torched beside allotments last August.
The jury heard how her killers ate a curry they had cooked as their victim lay dying in the house.
The mother-of-two worked at her sister’s nail bar but also helped Vietnamese people find accommodation when she came across Unwin, who worked for landlords maintaining properties.
She would not have known he was a life prisoner, out on licence for murdering a pensioner in 1998.
Tellingly, he also set fire to his elderly victim’s house in a bid to cover his tracks.
McFall, who is from Northern Ireland, also murdered a pensioner during a 1996 break-in.
The killers met in the prison system at HMP Swaleside, a Category B institution, in Kent. They got in touch via Facebook after they were both released on licence.
They teamed up, working together legitimately, but also stealing cannabis from farms they found in local properties.
They planned their depraved attack on the 5ft victim and Unwin tricked her into coming into his home, where McFall was waiting.
The Irishman had texted Unwin earlier that evening saying: “We raping the chink”?
Each of the defendants blamed the other, seemingly hoping to confuse the jury.
McFall wrote to Unwin while they were on remand saying he had been to the prison library and found a “legal loophole” despite what he admitted was damning evidence.
The prosecution claimed their loophole was simply to blame one another.
Videos filmed on a mobile phone showed how close the men were.
In one, seemingly filmed for a fellow ex-prisoner, Unwin talks about paying a prostitute £100 for her to have sex with them both at the same time.
In another, McFall chillingly plays with an air pistol, and in two more they film cannabis farms they planned to raid.
After the trial, the victim’s sister Quyhn Ngoc Nguyen branded the killers “evil” and said they should never be released.
I think they should never be released, they are evil Quyhn Ngoc Nguyen, victim's sister
In a statement, she said: “I believe that if these two people were released at some point in the future, then definitely some innocent people could be harmed.
“I think they should never be released, they are evil.”
David Hines, founder of the National Victims’ Association, said: “A life sentence should mean a minimum of 40 years behind bars.”
McFall made a series of outbursts from the dock while Unwin kept his head bowed after the jury convicted him following four hours of their deliberations.
The Ministry of Justice said fewer than one in 200 prisoners out on licence go on to commit a serious offence.
A spokesman said: “This was a truly heinous crime and our sincere condolences remain with Miss Nguyen’s family and friends.
“Serious further offences are very rare – but each one is taken extremely seriously and investigated fully so we identify any necessary actions when managing other cases.”
The Ministry of Justice said McFall and Unwin were not known to be associates.
It said people on “life licence” were monitored according to the risks they posed and “how long they have been on licence without cause for concern”.