Essex

Colchester double killer James Fairweather to appeal against sentence

James Fairweather Image copyright Essex Police
Image caption James Fairweather was arrested in May 2015 after being spotted hiding in bushes with a knife

A teenager who murdered two strangers is to appeal against his sentence which ruled he must serve at least 27 years.

James Fairweather, 17, was given two life sentences for killing James Attfield, 33, and Nahid Almanea, 31, in Colchester in 2014.

Mr Attfield was stabbed more than 100 times while Saudi Arabian student Ms Almanea was stabbed with a bayonet.

Simon Spence, QC, said his client was appealing against the "excessive" minimum sentence.

For more on this and other stories, visit BBC Essex Live

Image copyright Essex Police
Image caption Nahid Almanea (L) and James Attfield (R) were stabbed to death within a few months of each other in 2014

Fairweather, from Colchester, admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility, but was found guilty of murder after a trial at Guildford Crown Court.

His defence argued he had been bullied at school and the killings were a result of a combination of his autism, paranoia and voices in his head.

The prosecution and jury rejected the claims.

Mr Spence said the application would be considered by a high court judge who would either grant leave for a full appeal or reject the application.

A date is yet to be set for the hearing.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionJames Fairweather told police how he carried out the killing [Warning: Graphic description]

More on this story