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Friday, 21 December, 2001, 16:45 GMT
Couple plotted to murder women
court graphic
A disgraced former policeman, described in court as a potential serial killer, has been convicted of plotting with his former lover to murder women and children.

Detectives investigating 55-year-old Brian Darby, from Enfield, north London, believe he would have killed if he had not been caught.

Darby, who had stalked six women, was eventually arrested after he placed a wire round the neck of a 45-year-old woman but she escaped.

He was convicted at the Old Bailey with his former lover, Jeanette White from Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol.

Plotted killings

She was found guilty of conspiracy to murder and soliciting murder.

Judge Paul Focke remanded the pair in custody for reports, but warned both of them that they faced "substantial" prison terms.

The court was told the couple dreamed up numerous killings in 450 pages of letters which contained references to cannibalism and other acts.

Darby had been a police constable with the Leicestershire force when he was sacked in 1978 for indecently assaulting boys.

He then went to work for the BBC during the 1980s.

While posing as researcher with the corporation he answered advertisements from women trying to find tenants.

The woman he attacked, a mother-of-four, told the court: "I wanted to be alive for my children."

'Serial killer'

The prosecution said White urged her former lover to visit a woman in Westminster.

They then exchanged letters about killing the woman and her two children.

One of letters read: "In our journey of everlasting union we need the living body of a female to use. Her death will be our birth."

Darby admitted attempted murder and was found guilty of aggravated burglary and conspiracy to murder.

Detective Constable Paul Johnson said: "We strongly believe that Brian Darby was a potential serial killer who we identified before he had the opportunity to successfully carry out his plans to murder women and children."

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