Lee Rigby killer fails in first appeal bid amid revelation of taxpayers’ £200,000 legal aid bill

One of Lee Rigby’s killers has failed in his first attempt to appeal against his conviction and sentence.

Michael Adebolajo, 29, who along with Michael Adebowale, 23, was convicted of the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby near Woolwich Barracks last year, and both are serving life sentences for the crime.

During their trial, Mr Justice Sweeney said Adebolajo was the leader of the plot to kill the soldier, saying that he had ‘no real prospect of rehabilitation’.

Adebolajo, who can expect to spend the rest of his life in prison, has renewed both appeals, which will now be heard by Court of Appeal judges in London at a later date, despite this first rejection of his appeal.

Michael Adebowale, 23, who was given a minimum 45-year jail term, has also been told he can appeal against his sentence.

These rulings coincide with the revelation following a Freedom of Information request made by The Sun newspaper that the defence costs of the two killers had cost the taxpayer more than £200,000.

Adebolajo has received £138,803.96 in legal aid and Adebowale £73,809.36.

Fusilier Rigby, 25,  was killed by the self-claimed ‘soldiers of Allah’ in a vicious attack involving a meat cleaver and knives in Woolwich, southeast London on May 22, 2013.

The two men had targeted Fusilier Rigby in broad daylight as terror-stricken passers-by watched on because he was wearing a Help for Heroes hooded top and a camouflage rucksack.

They claimed they had killed the soldier as an attack against ‘those militaries that attack the Muslims’.

The two men were shot by police during their apprehension – images that were caught on CCTV.

Image courtesy of ITV, via YouTube, with thanks.

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