Can­nan’s chill­ing jail let­ter whinges over Lam­plugh hunt and tells of dark past

Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - Front Page - BY DAN WAR­BUR­TON dan.war­bur­ton@mir­

BLEAT­ING killer John Can­nan has penned a self-pity­ing let­ter from jail in which he taunts Suzy Lam­plugh cops with chill­ing ref­er­ences to his past.

The twisted mur­derer claims po­lice are “as­sas­si­nat­ing” his char­ac­ter and says he is “deeply up­set” by an on­go­ing dig at his mum’s old home.

He even says he had wanted to “throw my­self off the build­ing” after learn­ing of the po­lice op­er­a­tion.

Po­lice are search­ing for Suzy’s body and Can­nan, 64, is the only sus­pect over her dis­ap­pear­ance in 1986.

But in his let­ter, which the Sun­day Mir­ror has passed to po­lice, he be­moans the fact he can­not pub­licly de­fend him­self.

And in a mys­te­ri­ous ex­tract he makes two ref­er­ences to his old life.

Can­nan – jailed for the 1987 killing of Shirley Banks, 29 – writes: “At the time I was liv­ing my life very much in the shad­ows be­cause of what I was do­ing, so take noth­ing at face value.”

And in a bizarre turn of phrase, he adds: “Strange re­ally, the re­al­ity of my life is so much more in­ter­est­ing yet it has been buried.”

Can­nan, who de­nies any in­volve­ment in 25-year-old es­tate agent Suzy’s dis­ap­pear­ance, wrote to a woman pen­pal from top se­cu­rity Full Sut­ton jail, near York.


The let­ter is dated

Novem­ber 6, eight days after a search be­gan at his mother’s for­mer house in Sut­ton Cold­field, West Mids. Po­lice are prob­ing a the­ory that Suzy was buried in a garage in­spec­tion pit which was then filled with con­crete.

Suzy – pro­nounced dead, pre­sumed mur­dered, in 1994 – van­ished in 1986 after leav­ing her of­fice to show a prop­erty to a client known only as Mr Kip­per in Ful­ham, South West Lon­don.

Can­nan is said to have jok­ingly used the name Mr Kip­per to a girl­friend – and bail hos­tel pals nick­named him Kip­per for eat­ing smelly fish and sleep­ing much of the day.

He was re­leased from jail on day re­lease days be­fore Suzy van­ished.

And a crim­i­nol­o­gist says a red Ford Sierra later re­trieved by po­lice had traces of Can­nan’s and Suzy’s DNA.

But in his prison note Can­nan claims he is “pow­er­less” to protest his in­no­cence. He writes: “The po­lice as­sas­si­na­tion of me has up­set me deeply. Worse, I am in no po­si­tion to re­ply to it so I feel pow­er­less.”

Last week a 1987 dat­ing video

emerged show­ing suited Can­nan sneer­ing and smil­ing as he spoke about his ideal woman.

The film for Suitor Dat­ing Agency was just six weeks be­fore he was ar­rested for ab­duct­ing and mur­der­ing new­ly­wed Shirley Banks in Bris­tol.

Can­nan’s ap­pear­ance is in marked con­trast to the di­shev­elled and wild po­lice mugshot taken after his ar­rest over Shirley’s mur­der. In the video he

de­scribed his per­fect woman as ac­tress Stephanie Beacham and said he wanted to find “some­body nat­u­ral, nice and pleas­ant, some­body with char­ac­ter... some­body who’s easy and re­laxed to be with”.

But he also snarled about be­ing turned off by the “in­flated egos” and “in­ner weak­ness” of some women.

Can­nan writes about the dat­ing video in his let­ter to the pen­pal.

He says: “Well ac­tu­ally, I never asked to meet any woman from that agency.

“It wasn’t quite what you think. Ac­tu­ally do not be­lieve much of what you’re read­ing or see­ing on telly. A lot of it I dis­pute.”

Can­nan thanks his fe­male friend for a “kind let­ter” she wrote to him – and even says he would buy her a villa if he won the lot­tery.

He also dis­cusses his own ap­pear­ance, writ­ing: “Phys­i­cally I haven’t changed much. I piled on weight for a few years but I’ve since lost it again.”

Can­nan is serv­ing three life sen­tences – for Shirley’s mur­der in Oc­to­ber 1987, at­tempted kid­nap of a woman the pre­vi­ous night and rap­ing a woman in Read­ing a year ear­lier.

He was cap­tured when he robbed a dress shop as­sis­tant at knife­point three weeks after Shirley van­ished.

A road tax disc from Shirley’s car was found in Can­nan’s black BMW. It led to the dis­cov­ery of her Mini Club­man in his garage at a block of flats where he lived in Clifton, Bris­tol.

The car had a false plate – SLP 386S, a sus­pected ref­er­ence to Suzy’s name and the year she van­ished.

Can­nan was given a whole life sen­tence at Ex­eter Crown Court in April 1989, but it was com­muted on ap­peal to a 35-year min­i­mum tar­iff. He is el­i­gi­ble for pa­role in four years.

MYS­TERY Suzy Lam­plugh van­ished

I am in no po­si­tion to re­ply, I feel pow­er­less... it has up­set me deeply JOHN CAN­NAN ON LINK TO SUZY LAM­PLUGH WARPED Killer Can­nan is serv­ing lifeKILLER’S SELF PITY Twisted Can­nan slams po­lice in note writ­ten from top se­cu­rity jail and sent to woman pen­pal

SUZY LAM­PLUGH Van­ished in 1986

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