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Convicted murderer who killed again after being released from prison will spend life behind bars

Alan Maidment will spend the rest of his life behind bars Photo: MEN Media

A ‘highly dangerous’ convicted murderer killed again nine months after being released in ‘strikingly similar’ circumstances.

Alan Maidment, 40, will die behind bars after being sentenced to a whole life term for murdering 47-year-old father-of-one Thomas Jones, at his victim’s flat in Richmond Court, Berry Street, Clifton.

Mr Jones was stabbed 32 times before his body was set on fire, on March 22, this year.

Maidment initially confessed to police, saying he had committed the murder in revenge after hearing that Mr Jones had assaulted Natalie Strickland, a former girlfriend of both men.

But he withdrew his confession and brought the case to trial, before a jury convicted him of murder on Monday. The sentencing judge described Maidment as a ‘highly dangerous’ man who turned ‘vigilante’.

The court heard how after setting fire to Mr Jones’ body and endangering other residents, Maidment went to a petrol station to collect accelerant for the fire in an empty milkshake bottle he found in a bin.

But firefighters had arrived by the time he returned.

Nearly two decades earlier, in July 1999, Maidment, then aged 22, killed 72-year-old Paul Carlson in his flat in Manchester.

Armed with a hammer, he beat the man to death in the victim’s own flat, which Manchester Crown Court heard was also in a perceived revenge attack.

He was sentenced to life in prison but was released in June last year. Sentencing him to a whole life term, Judge David Stockdale QC said:

The striking similarities between the brutal killings of Paul Carlson and Thomas Jones are all too obvious. This was a cold blooded, premeditated act of execution.

“You cared nothing for the life of Thomas Jones. More than that, as it seems to me you cared nothing for the lives of the residents in Richmond Court. You in my judgement are a highly dangerous man, who poses a real threat to the life of anyone who crosses you or is perceived to have insulted you. “You have shown no remorse whatsoever.”

– Judge David Stockdale QC

Judge Stockdale added that Mr Jones ‘did not deserve to die’ because of the reported assault on Ms Strickland.

He added:

That was a matter for the police, not for a vigilante like you.” Mr Jones’s sister Marianne Cavalli read out an emotional victim impact statement, saying Mr Jones loved music and kept in touch with his son Thomas.

“Nobody should ever have the experience of being told that their loved one has been stabbed 32 times and how their body has been set on fire.

“This is something that will stay with us for the rest of our lives.” Ms Cavalli added that she and the family had been ‘shocked’ to learn of Mr Jones’ assault during the trial, which she described as ‘completely uncharacteristic’.

– Judge Stockdale

Addressing Maidment, she said:

Alan Maidment has shown himself to be a liar, a manipulator and a coward, refusing to take responsibility for his actions and to blame other people.

“We have asked how he managed to manipulate the system to be released from prison.”

– Judge Stockdale

In what the judge described as a ‘particularly sinister’ aspect of the case, Maidment wore two pairs of clothes on the night of the murder and discarded the outer later into some water, as well as his phone and the murder weapon.

Still at large nine days later, Maidment then committed a number of knife-point robberies on passengers at the South Chadderton Metrolink stop in Oldham, on March 31, while high on drink and drugs.

He approached three women and demanded money, threatening them with a knife, it was said.

At about 6am the following morning, Maidment, holding a knife, arrived at McDonald’s at Elk Mill retail park in Royton, Oldham, Greater Manchester, and asked members of staff to call the police.

Before being questioned by police on April 1, Maidment was assessed by a nurse to see whether he was fit to be interviewed. The nurse asked Maidment what his plans were if he was going to be released, and he said he would ‘hurt people’.

Asked why, Maidment said because he ‘enjoyed’ it, and that he ‘enjoyed the drama’.

After the hearing, Senior Investigating Officer Duncan Thorpe, of GMP’s Major Incident Support Unit, said:

In an appalling attempt to conceal his monstrous attack, Maidment carelessly put further lives in danger by starting a fire at communal flats.

“Alan Maidment is a particularly dangerous individual who was only released from prison on life license in June 2016, after killing another man. He will now spend the rest of his life behind bars to contemplate his actions.

“My thoughts are with Thomas’ family and the other victims in this case who now have to deal with the aftermath of Maidment’s violent actions.”

– Senior Investigating Officer Duncan Thorpe, of GMP’s Major Incident Support Unit

Maidment, of Ludlow Avenue, Salford, was found guilty of murdering Thomas Jones after trial and earlier pleaded guilty to five counts of robbery and possession of a bladed weapon.