Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Probe into How a Satanist Was Free to Kill Young Diego

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Probe into How a Satanist Was Free to Kill Young Diego

Article excerpt


THE police and Crown Prosecution Service are today investigating how a satanist was freed from jail to murder a 12-year-old boy.

Devil worshipper Edward Crowley, 52, was yesterday jailed for life at the Old Bailey for killing schoolboy Diego Piniero-Vil-lar. The boy's mother Angeles Fernandez with other relatives - threw water, plastic containers and court files at Crowley as she heard how he had formed an intimate relationship with her son which ended in murder. Homeless Crowley, a disciple of the Victorian satanist Aleister Crowley, haunted Phoenix Gardens in Covent Garden where he first spotted and befriended Diego.

Residents were concerned about him hanging around the boy and informed police.

Crowley said their relationship became "flirtatious but not sexual".

Although Crowley was arrested three times, police found no evidence of indecency. He was finally charged with harassing the boy who lived with his mother and her partner in Covent Garden. He was remanded in custody for psychiatric assessment in December 1999. Even after Crowley was charged with harassing Diego - and deemed dangerous - he was released on bail in March last year with conditions that he did not contact the boy.

He was not to go to Phoenix Gardens or the school, but had to report at a police station between 2pm and 4pm each day. On 3 April, the condition that he should report to police was removed after an application by the defence.

Police sources insist steps were taken to inform local officers about Crowley's release. Two months later he stabbed Diego to death with a kitchen knife.

The boy's 15-year-old stepbrother was also seriously injured. A diagram found in Crowley's possession was headed: "D Piniero is to be destroyed" in Latin. There were also diagrams relating to sacrifices. A forensic psychiatrist had recommended Crowley should be remanded in custody as he posed a danger. But although he had a personality disorder, he was not psychotic, and could not be held under the Mental Health Act.

Now an independent inquiry has started into the mental health and child care aspects of a case which ended in tragedy.

Diego's mother said she had repeatedly called police to tell them that her son was being stalked and harassed, and was petrified something would happen to her "precious angel".

She said police had not told her Crowley was released on police bail, and added: "I believe they did not do enough to protect my boy."

Diego's sister Natalia, 31, questioned her mother's actions, saying police had approached her mother twice but she had refused to press charges.

Mrs Fernandez, 49, said today she would not rest until Crowley was dead: "Prison is not good enough - it should be the death penalty. …

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