Killer urged to say where body is

Hampshire Chronicle: Neil Gillingham, the grandson of convicted killer Russell Causley, has demanded he reveal the whereabouts of his grandmother Carol Packman's body Neil Gillingham, the grandson of convicted killer Russell Causley, has demanded he reveal the whereabouts of his grandmother Carol Packman's body

The grandson of a convicted killer has demanded he reveal the whereabouts of his grandmother's body as they prepare to meet for the first time.

Neil Gillingham, 24, has never seen his grandfather Russell Causley, who is serving a life sentence for the murder of his wife Carol Packman.

Mrs Packman, 40, disappeared in the summer of 1985, 12 months after her husband had moved his lover into their home in Bournemouth, Dorset.

Causley, 71, has twice been convicted of murdering his wife but he has never revealed how he disposed of her body.

Mr Gillingham said he will face his grandfather, who is serving a 16-year sentence, when he attends the killer's parole hearing next month.

He said: "To this day we don't know what happened to my grandmother.

"My grandfather has never spoken, he's never defended himself in court.

"I don't see how somebody who could be so callous, narcissistic and who refuses to co-operate at all to provide closure to the victims, could be considered safe to be released back into society. That baffles me.

"He's manipulative. He's evil. You can't do that to another human being and not show remorse.

"He's dragged my mum through hell and back."

Mr Gillingham will attend the hearing with his mother Samantha Gillingham, the only daughter of Causley and Mrs Packman.

He said he felt "overwhelmed" about the prospect of seeing his grandfather and wanted to ask him why he gave up "a beautiful wife and a beautiful daughter.... with one selfish act".

"It's going to be a very emotional time, I think more so for my mother," Mr Gillingham said.

"I think it's going to be difficult for me because I'm going to want to support my mum but I can't. I can be there but I haven't got any of the answers that she actually wants.

"The only person that can offer those to her is going to be my grandfather.

"It's going to be an overwhelming and nerve-wracking time."

Following his wife's death, Causley changed his surname to that of his lover, Patricia Causley, in 1989.

He was first convicted of murder by a jury at Winchester Crown Court in December 1996.

The conviction came after police reopened their investigation into Mrs Packman's disappearance after Causley faked his own death in 1993 as part of an insurance fraud.

The original murder conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal in London in June 2003, but appeal judges ordered that he should be tried again.

He was again convicted over the death of Mrs Packman at a retrial at Exeter Crown Court in April 2004.

Mr Gillingham, who is originally from Creaton, Northamptonshire, said his family had been through two murder trials and were no closer to knowing the whereabouts of his grandmother's body.

He said: "When you can't lay a loved one to rest, and then year in, year out you're reminded of that, every time my grandfather lodges another appeal or has another parole hearing, it's difficult."

In a direct message to his grandfather, Mr Gillingham said: "You want to be released, that's absolutely fine - you tell us where she is."

Mr Gillingham said he had concerns his grandfather had already been moved to a category C prison and any plans to release the murderer would be "disrespectful to the victim's family."

"I don't want him to be released," Mr Gillingham said. "I'm fearful if he is released, potentially, what he could do to my mother."

Mr Gillingham, who lives in London, said the family had recently been given "hope" when they were notified about a body found in Germany. However DNA tests later proved the body was not that of Mrs Packman.

In a statement due to be read to the parole hearing, Mrs Samantha Gillingham said her father's silence on the whereabouts of her mother's body was "deafening".

She said: "I have given all that I can to try and assist throughout the subsequent investigations into my mother's disappearance. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for my father.

"His silence has been deafening, the complete disregard for his wife of 19 years, two murder trials, many appeals at the High Court and he says nothing.

"This has shaped my life completely, it has had a significant impact on my own marriage, and my son was bullied horrendously as his childhood was blighted by the process that he was the grandson of a murderer."

Mrs Gillingham said her father remained "a concern" and she has pleaded for him not to be released.

She added: "I cannot convey enough the impact that this has had on my life, the loss of both of my parents from the age of 16, I still now ask my father for him to start the process of rehabilitation, the cruelty that he exerts, knowing the information that I am so desperate to hear.

"Please do not allow parole, do not even consider the move to a category D open prison to my father.

"I do consider him to be a concern, he continues to exert the same control over this situation by not engaging, I know this as I have not been told where my mother is and the sadness that this causes me is immeasurable."

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said it did not comment on individual cases.

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