ABERDEENSHIRE Council have announced that they will remove the controversial headstone from murder victim Claire Morris’ grave.
The council, which has been under pressure to intervene somehow in the unusual case, took the steps following calls from the family for headstone to be removed.
Claire Morris was murdered by husband Malcolm Webster in 1994, however he retains ownership of the lair at Tarves cemetary. Webster, who was convicted of his wife’s murder last year, has faced calls to relinquish control of the lair, which he has refused thus far to do.
Aberdeenshire Council has removed the headstone from the grave of Claire Morris, following calls from her family.
Head of Legal & Governance at Aberdeenshire Council Karen Wiles explained: “We appreciate the strong feelings of Ms Morris’ family and the wider public mood about this issue.
“Having considered very carefully all the legal implications we believe that, given Mr Webster’s criminal conviction, it is appropriate for us to remove the headstone and place it in secure storage.
“We have written to Mr Webster’s lawyer asking him to relinquish his position as lairholder and have received a response declining this request. We will be writing once again to advise them of the action we have now taken.
“We are keen to alleviate any further distress to the Morris family, but it is entirely appropriate that we consider our position very carefully before taking any action.”
Ryan Whelan, Founder of the Aberdeen Law Project, has been the student advising the Morris family. He said: “The Morris family and I are delighted that the council has acted to remove the headstone.