A mother and stepfather are facing life sentences in the UK for murdering a four-year-old schoolboy who was systematically starved under the noses of his teachers and health professionals.
The “incomprehensible” murder of Daniel Pelka by Magdelena Luczak and Mariusz Krezolek, which has chilling echoes of the 2007 death of 17-month-old Baby P, is the subject of a serious case review.
Jurors took under four hours to unanimously convict Luczak and Krezolek following a nine-week trial at Birmingham Crown Court.
The couple battered Daniel to death after a six-month campaign of cruelty in which he was denied food, “imprisoned” in a locked box room and force-fed salt.
Both originally from Poland, the pair also forced Daniel to perform arduous punishment exercises such as squats or running, while hoodwinking teachers and doctors into believing his weight loss was due to an eating disorder.
The boy’s murder, which occurred weeks after teaching staff saw him with bruising to his neck and black eyes, is being reviewed by Coventry’s Safeguarding Children Board.
The board’s serious case review will examine why social services and police did not become involved after staff at Coventry’s Little Heath Primary School noticed the bruising and what appeared to be two black eyes.
Although the injuries to the neck were entered in a concerns book at Daniel’s school, no written record was made of the later bruising seen around his eyes.
The trial heard Luczak played a leading role in convincing teachers and medical professionals that Daniel’s dramatic weight loss, which left him looking like a famine victim, was due to a rare genetic disorder.
Neither Krezolek nor Luczak, who face mandatory life terms when they are sentenced on Friday, showed any obvious emotion as they were found guilty.