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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 November, 2003, 17:30 GMT
Schoolboy 'tortured and dismembered'
Adam Morrell
Adam's body parts were found in different locations
A Leicestershire schoolboy was beaten, doused in boiling water and strangled before his body was cut up with a hacksaw, a court has been told.

Adam Morrell, 14, was left with more than 280 injuries by the gang who tortured him in November 2002.

Nottingham Crown Court heard that Adam was last seen at a fair in Loughborough a few days before his severed arm was discovered by passers-by in a nearby canal.

Matthew Welsh, 19, Daniel Biggs, 19, and Sarah Morris, 17, all from Loughborough, are on trial accused of his murder.

Body parts

Prosecuting barrister John Milmo told the court: "This is a case of the death of a 14-year-old boy in circumstances we suggest of great cruelty."

Members of the gang apparently told police how they had turned up music to drown out the noise as his body was sawn into pieces and then frantically cleaned the house in Havelock Street to hide the evidence.

A fourth person, 27-year-old Nathan Barnett, pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility at an earlier hearing.

The court was also told on Wednesday that Adam was a "handful" at home and school and had been expelled on a number of occasions.

He called his father in the days before his death to say he was staying with friends for the night, but his family never heard from him again.

Police divers

Mr Milmo said a group of people walking along the canal on 17 November 2002 spotted a black plastic bag wrapped in silver tape in the water.

They pulled the object towards the canal bank and fished it out, when they discovered what looked like fingers.

Adam's remaining severed body parts were found at different locations around Loughborough over the next few days, Mr Milmo said.

A woman discovered legs in another plastic bag, his torso was also found and a bag containing the boy's clothes was recovered by police from an electricity substation.

His head was also wrapped in a black plastic bag and was found by underwater search teams in the canal.

The trial continues.

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