June 2016

TWO murderers yesterday won a European Court of Human Rights claim 


TWO convicted paedophiles & murderers yesterday won a European Court of Human Rights claim and £3,700 legal costs.

Judges ruled the rights of Charles O’Neil, 54, and William Lauchlan, 40, to a fair hearing were breached because it took too long to bring them to trial.

The pair, who were sentenced to life in May 2010 for the murder of Allison McGarrigle, were accused of the killing the girl in order to stop her reporting their abuse of a young boy.

McGarrigle, whose body has never been found, was last seen alive in 1997 . Prosecutors said they had put her body in a bin before dumping it at sea.

O’Neil and Lauchlan had multiple convictions for child sex offences. They were investigated over Madeleine McCann but cleared of any involvement.

In and out of prison while the search for McGarrigle went on, her death was only officially recognised in 2005, prompting cops to launch “Operation Aspen” to investigate the pair’s involvement.

New evidence came to light and both O’Neil and Lauchlan were eventually charged with the murder in 2008, with the pair finally being convicted at Glasgow High Court two years later.

O’Neil was ordered to serve at least 30 years behind bars with Lauchlan receiving a minimum of 26 years. Their appeals were dismissed in 2014.

The ECHR denied the Scottish killers claim for damages of £350,000, but it said the UK Government must pay towards their legal costs.

O’Neil and Lauchlan previously made a human rights claim that as gay men they were denied family life by a ban which stopped them visiting each other in their different jails.

An Edinburgh judge threw out the claim. Both are serving life sentences.

November 2014

Killer paedophile couple in £35,000 compensation claim over ‘hurt feelings’ – because they’re in separate prisons

A murdering paedophile couple are seeking £35,000 each in compensation for “hurt feelings” after they were kept apart in jail.

Charles O’Neill and William Lauchlan launched a human rights challenge to see each other in prison as they serve their life sentences, the Daily Record reports.

The pair, who killed a woman and dumped her body at sea, claim the Scottish Government has failed to respect their rights under the European Convention ofHuman Rights and they have been discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation.

They are not only killers, but predatory paedophiles who have convictions dating back 12 years.

These include crimes such as serious sexual assault and raping young boys

In 1998, O’Neill and Lauchlan were jailed for eight years and six years respectively for 31 charges of sexually abusing children.

They lured five young boys between the ages of nine and 15 to a house in Skelmorlie, North Ayrshire, where they fed them drugs and alcohol before molesting them.

The pair were released early in 2002. Lauchlan went to Spain and was joined there in 2003 by O’Neill.

While he was still in Scotland following release from prison, O’Neill befriended a family in Irvine and earned their trust before sexually abusing a 14-year-old boy.

After committing this offence in June 2003, O’Neill joined Lauchlan in Spain where they set up a window cleaning business.

They then befriended a family in a karaoke bar near Benidorm and lured two English brothers, aged 15 and 18, on a camping trip under the pretext of giving them a job.

When the older brother left, O’Neill and Lauchlan abducted the 15-year-old for three nights in April 2004 and attempted to drug and sexually assault him.

They were arrested but not prosecuted for the attack and were later deported to Scotland where they were returned to jail for breaching parole.

They maintain that they were in “a long-standing intimate and sexual relationship with each other” prior to being jailed for life after they were convicted of murdering Allison McGarrigle following a trial in 2010.

O’Neill, 51, and Lauchlan, 37, are housed in different prisons within the Scottish jail system and the authorities have not granted permission for them to see each other in visits.

O’Neill is presently detained in Edinburgh’s Saughton prison and Laughlan is held in Glenochil jail, in Clackmannanshire.

Last year they failed in a bid to overturn their murder convictions.

They claim that their treatment has breached their rights under Article 8 of the ECHR, which provides protection for private and family life.

They are also seeking damages of £35,000 each claiming they are entitled to an award for “hurt feelings” among other things.

A statement in their bid says: “Their relationship has suffered as a consequence of the treatment they have suffered. They have both felt frustration and distress at being unable to communicate with each other to a greater extent or to have face-to-face contact.

“This is particularly so when heterosexual couples have apparently been afforded greater contact with each other.”

O’Neill was ordered to serve at least 30 years in prison and his accomplice was given a minimum term of 26 years after they were found guilty of murdering 39-year-old Mrs McGarrigle in Largs in 1997 and disposing of her corpse at sea.

Her body was not found.

They were also sentenced for sex abuse offences following two trials.

Ministers are contesting the action brought by the killers and maintain none of the orders sought from the court is justified.

The hearing continues.

June 2014 – Paedophiles who murdered woman lose legal bid to have prison terms cut

10 June 2010

Paedophiles who killed a mother because they feared she would expose their crimes jailed for life

Two paedophiles who murdered a woman they believed was about to expose their crimes have been jailed for life.

Charles O’Neill and William Lauchlan killed mother Allison McGarrigle, 39, almost 13 years ago as they believed she intended to alert authorities to their abuse of a young boy.

Mrs McGarrigle was reported missing in February 1998,seven months after she disappeared.

Her body has never been recovered and she was declared dead in 2005.

The men denied the murder but were today found guilty in the Glasgow High Court, for engaging in criminal sexual activity with a boy for three years and killing Mrs McGarrigle ‘believing that she intended to report such activity to the authorities’.

The murder trial at the High Court in Glasgow heard Lauchlan and O’Neill were friends with Mrs McGarrigle before her disappearance in June 1997.

Her husband Robert McGarrigle told the court his wife did not own a passport and could not drive. He also said she struggled with reading and writing and needed help.

Outside court the victim’s son Robert McGarrigle said he was ‘over the moon’ with the sentence.

He said: ‘Lauchlan and O’Neill have taken away the best mum in the world.
Allison McGarrigle was a bubbly, happy woman with a heart of gold.

‘She loved children and she was taken away from us trying to protect a young boy from abuse.

‘For many years we have had to live with not knowing what had happened to her, but we knew she was not missing.

‘If she was still alive she would not have left her three kids and missed out on watching her four grandchildren growing up.

‘We miss her terribly and wish that we could lay her to rest.’

Scott Pattison, the Crown Office director of operations, said it was ‘chillingly clear’ that the pair were ‘sexual predators who were willing to kill to secure access to children and abuse them for their own gratification’.

He said: ‘Allison had tried to defend a young boy from abuse at their hands. To silence her, Lauchlan and O’Neill threatened her, held her against her will, murdered her and then disposed of her body.

‘Her body has still not yet been recovered; as a result, her family has not been able to lay her to rest since her disappearance in 1997. We can only imagine the depth of their sorrow.’

‘Our prosecution teams in Ayrshire and Central have been tireless in their efforts to bring both these men to justice for their crimes.

‘Now that Lauchlan and O’Neill have been convicted, justice has been done and in this we hope that the families of all those who have suffered find some degree of comfort.’

Strathclyde Assistant Chief Constable Ruaraidh Nicolson, who was in overall command of the inquiry, said: ‘Two extremely dangerous individuals have been removed from our communities as a result of police forces combining to work in the interests of protecting the public.

‘O’Neill and Lauchlan were devious, manipulative and highly dangerous. They were willing to kill to ensure their activities did not come to the attention of the authorities.

He said an operation involving dozens of officers from the Fife, Central Scotland, Strathclyde and Lancashire forces led to today’s convictions.


Today at the High Court in Glasgow Lord Pentland sentenced William Lauchlan and Charles O’Neill to life imprisonment after they were found guilty of the murder of Allison McGarrigle in June 1997 at Largs. The punishment parts were fixed at 26 years and 30 years respectively.

“William Hugh Lauchlan and Charles Bernard O’Neill, you now stand convicted by the jury of the despicable murder of Mrs. Alison McGarrigle and of disposing of her body at sea. You have previously been convicted by a different jury of other serious charges on the same indictment, involving the sexual abuse of young men and the grooming of a 6 year old boy with the intention of sexually abusing him.

It is clear that you are both dangerous and determined predatory paedophiles and that you represent a high risk to the safety of the public, particularly young men and boys (especially those suffering from some form of vulnerability).

When you became aware that Mrs. McGarrigle intended to report you to the authorities for sexually abusing her son, you conceived a callous and depraved plan to murder her and to dispose of her body. You then put this plan into effect with chilling composure. You went to great lengths to cover your tracks. You must have thought, for some time, that you had succeeded in escaping detection since to this day Mrs. McGarrigle’s body has (tragically) not been recovered. It took determined work by the police and the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service as well as the courage of a number of witnesses, including members of Mrs. McGarrigle’s own family, to bring you both eventually to justice.

The consistent theme which permeated the evidence in both trials was your calculating and devious manipulation of vulnerable individuals in order to further your appetites for sexually abusing young men and boys.

You have each already served lengthy sentences of imprisonment imposed in this court for offences of child abuse, but this has evidently not deflected you from further predatory criminality. In the whole circumstances, I must sentence you on the footing that you are highly ruthless and unrepentant individuals with no respect for the law or the values of a civilised society.

In your case Lauchlan I sentence you to imprisonment for life on charge 2.

The law requires me to set a minimum period that you must serve in prison as the punishment part of your life sentence. In fixing this period I take account of the aggravating features of the case. I can identify no mitigating considerations. In the circumstances, I consider that you must serve at least 26 years in prison as punishment before the possibility of release on licence may even be considered. I emphasise that the period of 26 years is only a minimum which I am required by law to set at this stage. You will not necessarily be released after 26 years and may indeed never be released. I shall backdate that sentence to 25 March 2008, when you first appeared in court in relation to these matters.

On charge 3 I sentence you to 8 years imprisonment.

On charge 7 I sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.

On charge 10 I sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.

All these sentences will run concurrently with the sentence on charge 2.

In your case O’Neill, I again impose a sentence of life imprisonment on charge 2. You are older than your co-accused and you were the more dominant personality. In addition, you have been convicted of charge 5 (another charge involving sexual abuse of a minor, of which Lauchlan was not accused). You, like your co-accused, are a relentless and murderous paedophile. In the circumstances, the punishment part in your case must, in my view, be higher. I consider that you must serve a minimum period of 30 years in custody, backdated to 25 March 2008.

On charge 3 I sentence you to 8 years imprisonment.

On charge 5 I sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.

On charge 7 I sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.

On charge 10 I sentence you to 10 years imprisonment.

All these sentences will run concurrently with the sentence on charge 2.

You will both continue to be registered sex offenders for an indefinite period of time.

Finally, I will recommend to the Scottish Ministers that your names be added to the list of persons considered unsuitable to work with children.

Well ladies and gentlemen; it remains only for me to express to you my thanks on behalf of the Court for the most important public service you have performed as jurors in this distressing and anxious case. If I may say so ladies and gentlemen, it has been very clear to me that throughout the trial you have fulfilled your responsibilities in this matter with conspicuous care, diligence and attention. I commend you for that. The administration of justice in this country depends, to a considerable degree, on the contribution which citizens make as jury members. In view of the nature and duration of the trial, I consider that it is appropriate for me to recognise the importance of your contribution by discharging you from further service as jurors for a period of 10 years.

Thank you and good afternoon”.