Following a nine-month trial and over three weeks of deliberations, a jury found her guilty of 14 of the 22 counts she faced, after she embarked on a campaign of horror at the Countess of Chester Hospital between June 2015 and June 2016. The jury found her not guilty on two counts of attempted murder and could not reach verdicts on a further six of the same charge.
While concerns were raised by surgeons as early as late June 2015, she remained in her role for another year until she was eventually removed from the ward and put on clerical duties.
Despite claiming she had been the victim of a “conspiracy”, her account was rejected by the jury and she was convicted of seven counts of murder and seven counts of attempted murder, making her one of the country’s most prolific child killers.
Letby has been remanded in custody to be sentenced on Monday, but the court was told she has said she will not attend court and does not wish to follow the hearing via videolink from prison.
The reasons for her refusal to attend have not yet been disclosed by the judge. Members of the victims’ families will attend the hearing to give victim impact statements.
For such horrific crimes, Letby can only receive a mandatory life sentence and will likely spend the majority of her life behind bars.
It is likely she will be placed in HMP Low Newton, a maximum security prison that is home to many of the deadliest female killers in recent history.
The prison’s most infamous inmate was ‘House of Horrors’ killer Rosemary West, who sexually abused and murdered 10 women and children alongside her husband Fred West. She was eventually moved from HMP Low Newton in 2019, after another vicious killer, Joanna Dennehy, allegedly threatened to kill her.
Dennehy remains at the prison, where she is serving a sentence for the murder of three men following a two-week killing spree. She dumped their bodies in ditches outside Peterborough.
Located in the village of Brasside near Durham, the prison accepts female inmates from across the north of England and holds a number of lifers and juvenile prisoners.
An Independent Monitoring Board report, published in 2021, found that lessons and workshops had been axed due to problems with a leaking roof, while an entire block was due for demolition after failing health and safety checks.
Not all aspects of prison life were negative, however, with inmates able to enjoy DVD nights, and buy clothes from a fashion store. Staff were reported to be “friendly”.
Even the food was reported to be “nutritious, well cooked and of good variety”, with inmates offered a selection of hot meals and packed lunches.
Violence occasionally breaks out among prisoners and staff, while the board expressed concern that around 40 per cent of inmates suffered mental health problems.
HMP Low Newton is also home to the ‘Primrose Project’, which is designed to treat women with “dangerous and severe personality disorders”, and is the only prison in the UK with such a unit.
The service has 12 places for female offenders who are at a high risk of harm in England and Wales but can only accommodate one restricted-status woman at a time.
Entry criteria include a current offence of violence against the person, presenting a high risk of committing another serious offence, and likely to have a severe form of personality disorder.
Among the treatment options are sessions with a psychiatrist, art therapy, and acupuncture.
The Primrose Service won World Health Organisation(WHO) award in 2009 for high quality of service provided to female prisoners.