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Criminals Jailed This Week: Mother Convicted of Filicide and ‘Thug for Hire

by Jessica Luccy

A mother who killed her own child by poisoning him with antidepressants is among the individuals sentenced in Greater Manchester this week. Claire Scanlon, aged 38, has been sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 18 years for the murder of her five-year-old son, Dylan Scanlon.

Emergency services responded to a call on New Year’s Eve, 2021, in Limeside, Oldham, where Dylan was found unconscious. Despite attempts to revive him, he was pronounced dead. A toxicology report revealed a fatal dose of antidepressants in his system, while his body showed multiple bruises. Claire Scanlon initially claimed Dylan had fallen, but later admitted to hospital staff, “I killed my son.”

Prosecutors highlighted her anger and depression following the breakdown of her relationship with Dylan’s father. Following her trial, she was found guilty of murder and sentenced accordingly.

In another case, a deceitful son posed as his deceased mother, imitating her voice to defraud his grieving father out of £56,000. Daniel Cuthbert, aged 42, moved substantial sums, including his father’s redundancy payout, into his own account over a 14-month period, LancsLive reports.

He conducted telephone banking calls, impersonating his mother, and made transfers to his own account. Cuthbert also acquired loans under his father’s name, leading to substantial debts and the loss of his father’s home. Cuthbert pleaded guilty to fraud by false representation and received a two-year prison sentence.

Furthermore, a man known as a “thug for hire” directed his associates to disguise themselves as builders and carry out a violent attack on a family home. Khassim Lawrence, using the pseudonym “Motleymetal,” was identified through messages on the encrypted platform Encrochat.

The messages revealed plans for the targeted assault and the purchase of large quantities of drugs for distribution in Manchester. Lawrence accepted a contract to threaten an individual with a firearm, involving physical harm and property damage. Despite the knowledge that the target lived with a child, Lawrence and his gang showed no concern for innocent lives.

He was sentenced to five years and ten months in prison after pleading guilty to possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and conspiracy to supply cocaine. These cases reflect the gravity of the crimes committed and the subsequent judicial responses in the Greater Manchester area.

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