Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Stagg: After Years of Being Poor I Can Afford to Invest in My Home. but I Don't Have a 'Spend Spend' Mentality; Innocent: Colin Stagg with His Girlfriend Terri Marchant. He Has Used Some of His [Pounds Sterling]700,000 Payout on a 4x4 Car and Improving His Flat

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Stagg: After Years of Being Poor I Can Afford to Invest in My Home. but I Don't Have a 'Spend Spend' Mentality; Innocent: Colin Stagg with His Girlfriend Terri Marchant. He Has Used Some of His [Pounds Sterling]700,000 Payout on a 4x4 Car and Improving His Flat

Article excerpt

Byline: TED HYNDS, JUSTIN DAVENPORT

COLIN STAGG admitted today that he still has not fully come to terms with finally being proved innocent of killing model Rachel Nickell.

Having lived under a cloud of suspicion for more than a decade, Mr Stagg received more than [pounds sterling]700,000 compensation for his ordeal.

The conviction of Robert Napper, who admitted manslaughter, cemented Mr Stagg's place as the victim of a nearmiscarriage of justice. It was only this summer that he received a payout from the Home Office. He spent more than a year in jail awaiting trial before the case collapsed. Even after that, he remained a hate figure.

Mr Stagg told the Evening Standard: "I still haven't properly accepted how my life has changed so quickly. It was only a few months ago I was living on [pounds sterling]45 a week and watching every penny. My main concern was feeding the dog and having a few pounds to buy a packet of fags. I said at the time of the Home Office award it was like winning the lottery. And it was. The shock still hasn't worn off.

"After more than a decade living on the breadline and being unable to get a job, it's only natural to worry about money. Yet I can't spend all that interest and a lot goes to build up the pot." Since his windfall, he has embarked on a mini spending spree. He has bought a car, a big-screen television, a recording deck he is an accomplished guitarist and paid for his girlfriend Terri Marchant's patio. His first big purchase was the shiny, black 4 x 4 now sitting outside his home. "I wanted reliable transport to visit historic sites and beauty spots with my dog and take my girlfriend and her family for days out," he said.

He is determined to buy the threebedroom maisonette on the Alton Estate in Roehampton, where he has lived since childhood. He is entitled to a five-figure discount from Wandsworth council. Even at the height of his infamy, he refused to move. …

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