David Fuller: Victim's families of East Sussex double murderer to get compensation of up to £25,000

170522-Wendy Knell (left) and Caroline Pierce (right)
Wendy Knell (left) and Caroline Pierce (right) were murdered in 1987 Credit: Kent Police

More than 90 family members of the victims of corpse abuser and double killer David Fuller will receive financial compensation under a new Government scheme.

Close relatives of his victims are eligible to receive up to £25,000 for psychiatric trauma suffered as a result of Fuller’s crimes, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) announced on Thursday.

The 68-year-old filmed himself abusing corpses in the now-closed Kent and Sussex Hospital and the Tunbridge Wells Hospital, in Pembury, where he had worked as an electrician since 1989.

Fuller pleaded guilty to 44 charges relating to 78 victims in mortuaries at Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust between 2008 and November 2020, as well as the murders of two women in 1987.

Convicted double murderer David Fuller Credit: PA

The necrophiliac was sentenced to a whole life-term last year for beating and strangling Wendy Knell, 25, and Caroline Pierce, 20, to death before sexually assaulting them in two separate attacks in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.

The compensation scheme will be administered by NHS Resolution on behalf of Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust and will ensure that money is paid to relatives as soon as is practical.

More than 90 claimants have already come forward, with anyone able to demonstrate a close family relationship with one of Fuller’s victims able to apply.

There are three levels of compensation available, with all successful claimants eligible to receive at least £7,500.

They will be able to claim a further £5,000, up to £25,000 for psychiatric trauma.

A third tier will compensate specific financial losses.

For enquiries about the scheme, people are asked to contact Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust Legal Department at mtw-tr.compensationscheme@nhs.net.

Double murderer David Fuller admitted sexually abusing dead women in hospital mortuaries Credit: PA

Minister for mental health Maria Caulfield said: “My sincerest sympathies are with the families of all the victims of David Fuller.

“These were horrific events and the independent inquiry we have launched will help ensure this never happens again.

“Families will benefit from what has been announced today.”

Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust added: "The Trust is pleased that a compensation scheme has now been agreed and approved by the Department of Health and Social Care for the families of the victims of David Fuller’s mortuary crimes.

"The Trust is grateful to the families for the input they have provided into the design of the scheme.

"The Trust wishes to apologise once again for the hurt Fuller’s horrendous crimes have caused the families and understands that no amount of compensation can lessen the pain they have suffered as a result of his actions.

"The Trust hopes that the agreed compensation scheme will provide a fair and swift process for victims’ families and ensure family members are able to access any additional support they may need.

"Should any of the families want to speak to the Trust, or access the victim support services which have been put in place, please contact Victim Support online at: www.victimsupport.org.uk or by calling the Supportline: 0808 1689111."

The Government is conducting an independent inquiry into how Fuller was able to conduct the abuse undetected for more than a decade.

A report on the hospital trust is expected to be published next year.

Fuller pleaded guilty at Croydon Crown Court in November this year to sexually abusing a further 23 dead women.

He admitted 12 counts of sexual penetration of a corpse and four counts of possession of extreme pornography between 2007 and 2020.

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