30 years in jail for killer of student

editorial image

A MAN who branded himself ‘Psycho’ is facing life in prison for shooting dead a Lancaster University student in cold-blood on Boxing Day.

Kiaran Stapleton smirked and laughed after shooting dead Anuj Bidve, then had a ‘teardrop’ tattoo put on his cheek to mark the crime.

The dad-of-one had denied murder in a Manchester Crown Court trial, admitting only manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

He claimed a personality disorder affected his self-control, and he didn’t know what he was doing at the time.

But a jury rejected those claims in a trial lasting more than a month, and he will serve a minimum of 30 years in prison.

Mr Bidve, who was studying micro-electronics, was walking to the Boxing Day sales with eight friends when he was shot dead without warning at Ordsall Lane, Salford.

Stapleton had swaggered across the road and asked the group the time. He then pulled a pistol from his pocket and shot Anuj in the head.

Following the verdict, Anuj’s dad Subhash said: “Anuj was the kindest and most genuine person. He knew the difference between right and wrong and lived his life the right way.

“Kiaran Stapleton is the complete opposite, and yet he is the one who is still alive and our son is dead.

“We will now return to India, far sadder, and will take with us only the memories of our beloved son.”

Lancaster University has set up the Anuj Bidve Memorial Scholarship in his memory.

Vice-chancellor Professor Mark Smith said: “We will remember Anuj Bidve as an outstanding student at the beginning of a promising career.”