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Last Updated: Friday, 23 June 2006, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
Teenager jailed for murder frenzy
Daniel Pollen
Daniel Pollen was stabbed in the heart
A teenager has been jailed for life for the unprovoked and frenzied killing of a student and an attack on his friend.

Michael Lynch, 17, was told he would serve a minimum of 15 years by the judge at London's Woolwich Crown Court.

Lynch, of Stratford, east London, stabbed 20-year-old Daniel Pollen, a Southampton University medical student, in Romford, Essex, on 8 July last year.

Outside the court, Mr Pollen's parents, Terry and Josie, called for tougher sentences for knife crime.

"We leave court today trying to rebuild our lives, with only the treasured memories of Daniel," they said in a statement.

Mr Pollen was killed as he and his friend Andrew Griffiths waited for a lift home.

Mr Griffiths was seriously injured in the unprovoked attack.

He said after the case: "Because of a knife my life will never be the same again, they have taken my best friend from me."

Lynch's co-accused, Michael Onokah, 25, of Ilford, and Timmy Sullivan, 19, of Barking, were each jailed for a minimum of five years for wounding.

Mr Pollen and Mr Griffiths had done nothing to upset, antagonise or provoke any of you defendants
Judge Shirley Anwyl QC

Judge Shirley Anwyl QC told Lynch: "This was a co-ordinated, calculated attack that was as brutal as it was senseless.

"Mr Pollen and Mr Griffiths had done nothing to upset, antagonise or provoke any of you defendants."

She took into account Lynch's remorse, his low IQ and other personal problems in giving a sentence lower than the recommended minimum of 24 years.

Gratuitous violence

Sullivan and Onokah, both painters and decorators, were cleared of murder but convicted of causing grievous bodily harm and wounding with intent, after a trial last month.

The pair were given an indeterminate sentence and told they would have to serve at least five years before being considered for parole.

Michael Lynch
Michael Lynch was said to have shown remorse

Prosecutor Christopher Kinch QC said the sustained and co-ordinated piece of violence was "as brutal as it appears to have been senseless".

He said: "We are no nearer any clear explanation for the unleashing of that gratuitous violence on two entirely innocent young men," he said.

Mr Griffiths had described the attack to the court as a "70-second frenzy".

The two friends were waiting to get a lift from Mr Pollen's sister in the Brewery shopping centre in Romford, east London, when they were attacked in the early hours by the three men.

Mr Griffiths, from Chigwell, Essex, was punched in the face and head and was also stabbed.

Mr Pollen, from Buckhurst Hill, Essex, had his jaw broken and was stabbed in the heart and did not regain consciousness.


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