Relief for fireball victim's family

PUBLISHED: 12:13 07 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:30 03 March 2010

THE YOUNGEST brother of fireball murder mum Lorraine Baldwin tried in vain to choke back his tears as he told of the family's relief at the end of the court ordeal.

THE YOUNGEST brother of fireball murder mum, Lorraine Baldwin, tried in vain to choke back his tears as he told of the family's relief at the end of the court ordeal.

Speaking on behalf of Mrs Baldwin's family, who had been at Norwich Crown Court throughout the five-day trial, Wayne Baldwin told of a sense of "great relief" at Terence Abbott's conviction for the murder of his only sister.

"She was just a fun loving person who never did no-one no harm. Everybody loved her.

"She'd been through a lot in her life and really didn't deserve this," he said, minutes after Abbott had been jailed for life for pouring petrol over his estranged wife and igniting her.

Mr Baldwin, the youngest of three siblings at 36, who lives in Valley Walk, Felixstowe, told of the family's 11-month torment, starting with the petrol attack and followed by three-week's agony as his sister fought for life at Broomfield Hospital, in Essex, before her death.

"It's been building up for so long," he said, of the court ordeal which ended yesterday.

"For 25 or 26 days, Lorraine was trying was to recover in hospital. It was awful, absolutely awful. I wanted to talk to her and she couldn't talk. To her, that was the hardest."

Mr Baldwin said the whole family travelled to visit Lorraine as she bravely fought for survival although 75 per cent of her body was covered in burns.

As her mother, her aunt and daughter, Tanya, consoled one another outside the courtroom following yesterday's verdict, Abbott's supporters – including daughter Tassi who gave evidence on his behalf – sobbed nearby.

Moments earlier, four women in court to support Abbott had burst from the courtroom in tears after the foreman of the jury returned the unanimous guilty verdict for murder.

And as Mr Baldwin spoke of his hopes for a family reconciliation following the trial, which had torn sib lings apart, the tearful reunions began.

"They shouldn't be torn apart by this because they got on well before this," he said of the rift between Mrs Baldwin's children which had developed since her murder.

As he spoke, the sisters were already beginning to talk.

Minutes later, Tassi came over to her uncle and both fell into each other's arms in tears.

Speaking on television last night, Glenn Baldwin, Lorraine's brother, described his sister as a "normal, happy-go-lucky" person.

He said: "Now we're going to sit down and we're going to put our sisters reputation to rights."

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