Jon Venables thinks of James Bulger's death 'every day'

Court drawing of Jon Venables during his trial in 1993
Image caption Venables was freed from prison, aged 18, with an entirely new identity

Jon Venables, the killer of James Bulger, has said he thinks of the boy's death every day and "how different life might have been for those affected".

He has been jailed for two years after pleading guilty to charges of downloading and distributing indecent images of children.

Venables, 27, said he was "genuinely ashamed" of the offences.

His solicitor said Venables had vowed to turn his life around and "never go back" once released from prison again.

James Bulger's mother, Denise Fergus, said the two-year sentence was "simply not enough".

'No excuse'

A statement read outside the Old Bailey by her spokesman, Mr Johnson, said: "Once again we have had to sit through proceedings where justice has not been done.

"These were very serious offences and two years is simply not enough to meet the gravity of what this person did."

In a statement, Venables' solicitor John Gibson said his client was "extremely remorseful" and knew he had "badly let down" everyone who had tried to help him.

He said his client, who, together with friend Robert Thompson, murdered James in 1993 in Merseyside, "puts forward no excuse for his conduct".

Mr Gibson said: "He is genuinely ashamed, but he has and continues to express his remorse, and has come to an understanding of how children are harmed by those who have even a passing interest in such material, let alone by those who pass it on."

On the killing of James, Mr Gibson said: "Jon Venables began independent living in March 2002, at the age of 19, having spent almost half of his life in custody.

"The decision to release him was based on his acceptance of responsibility for, and understanding of what he had done, and that it would be with him for the rest of his life.

"He has said that every day since what took place in 1993 he has thought about how different life might have been for all those affected, who he appreciates have also had their own reasons for reflection."

Venables accepted a prison sentence was justified, Mr Gibson said, and that his release at the end of it was not a formality.

But he added: "He is determined now, once and for all, to become the person he wishes to be so that when he is eventually released from prison, he will never go back."

Meanwhile, Laurence Lee, who was Venables' solicitor during the James Bulger murder trial, said he remained a deeply troubled young man.

He said: "I'm not making excuses for him but when [Venables and Thompson] were released, I said at the time that they would be at liberty but he would never be free.

Enormous 'pressures'

"What I meant by that is that the pressures on them, having to adjust from eight years in an institution, having to invent a whole story to explain their teenage years to others. You can't tell when a lad of 18 is released from prison how he will be in his twenties."

Mr Lee added that the "pressures" on Venables "must have been enormous".

In the latest case, involving the downloading of indecent images of children, while Venables was living in Cheshire, the court heard he had experienced difficulties in forming relationships with women because it was a condition of his licence that he had to disclose his true identity to anyone with whom he was in a close relationship.

It also emerged that Venables was arrested for affray in September 2008 but the charge was dropped.

He claimed he had acted in self-defence, but was given a formal warning that his actions had breached the terms of his release.

The court also heard that he had become addicted to drugs, including cocaine, and was cautioned for possession of cocaine in December 2008.

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