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Thursday, 11 April, 2002, 13:42 GMT 14:42 UK
Damilola suspects 'showed no remorse'
Damilola Taylor
The defence claims Damilola died after falling on glass
Two brothers accused of the murder of 10-year-old Damilola Taylor showed "no remorse or shame" for killing him, the Old Bailey has been told.

In his closing speech prosecutor Mark Dennis told the jurors the 16-year-olds had taken part in an act of "gratuitous violence borne from cruelty and bullying".

But earlier on Thursday the judge, Mr Justice Hooper, told the jury they must acquit the brothers if they found they were using their mobile phones when the dying schoolboy was discovered.

Telephone records showed that calls were made at the time Damilola was found, in an area two to two-and-a-half miles away.

The prosecution claims Damilola died after being stabbed in the leg with a broken bottle, but the defence argues his fatal wounds were the result of a fall on shattered glass.

The brothers, from south London, deny murder, manslaughter and assault with intent to rob.

'Hapless victim'

In the final stages of the 10-week trial Mr Dennis told the seven men and four women of the jury the case against the brothers was unchanged.

He said: "They were part of a group of youths who deliberately and unlawfully waylaid Damilola Taylor.


What is also missing is a lack of shame for what occurred and an absence of any real remorse

Mark Dennis - prosecutor
"A concerted assault with a motive of robbery culminated in an act of gratuitous violence borne from cruelty and bullying."

Mr Dennis said the brothers had told cellmates in two young offender institutions about the attack, on the North Peckham Estate in south London, on November 27, 2000.

Song lyrics

He said they had done nothing to try and stop it or prevent a weapon being used on their "hapless victim".

"They were there and knew full well what happened," said Mr Dennis.

He added: "What is also missing is a lack of shame for what occurred and an absence of any real remorse."

Mr Dennis said the brothers' lack of remorse was reflected in the song lyrics written by one of the brothers, in which he warned others not to mess with him.

And he dismissed the claim that Damilola's injuries were the result of an accident, claiming it would have meant him falling in a "rather convoluted fashion ... with arms akimbo, flying through the air in some sort of Peter Pan fashion".

Find out more about the Damilola Taylor murder trial

Not guilty verdict

The fallout

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10 Apr 02 | England
03 Apr 02 | England
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