The man who shot dead Anuj Bidve in a “motiveless” murder in Greater Manchester, London has been jailed for life. Kiaran Stapleton (21), was found guilty of murder at Manchester Crown Court following a five-week trial. He shot the 23-year-old Lancaster University student on Boxing Day 2011 as he walked to the shops for the sale with friends. Stapleton was told he would serve a minimum term of 30 years.
Following the verdict, Bidve’s father Subhash said Stapleton had “openly laughed at the memory of our son”. Justice King said, “Only then will you be released if you are deemed not to be a risk to the public.” The judge said Stapleton — who in his first court appearance told magistrates his name was “Psycho Stapleton” — had committed a “truly wicked act” and was a “highly dangerous man” who posed a high risk of serious harm to other people.
“You have behaved in a way demonstrating that you are positively boastful about having killed Bidve,” he said. The killer showed no emotion as the sentence was passed, nodded before he was led from the dock, and then motioned with his hand towards his family to say, “chin up”. He had admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility but the jury rejected that argument and convicted him of murder.
Bidve had gone to Britain to study micro-electronics at Lancaster University and was visiting Manchester with a group of friends last Christmas.
They left their hotel in Salford to queue early for the sales when their paths crossed with Stapleton’s and he asked them for time. He then pulled a handgun out of his pocket and fired one shot to Bidve’s left temple.