Face of man in Lesley murder probe

18 December 2001
Manchester Evening News
Andrew Nott

A new picture of a fugitive wanted for questioning about an infamous child murder was released today. An international search for Raymond Hewlett has been under way since police re-opened the investigation into the 1975 sex killing of 11-year-old Lesley Molseed, from Rochdale.

Hewlett - first exposed as a suspect five years ago by the Manchester Evening News - is one of a number of men singled out by police probing the murder on moorland above Ripponden.

The new photograph - a passport picture from 1995 in Milan - was issued by police today in a new bid to catch Hewlett. Another grainy image has been released of Hewlett, 56, and his then-pregnant girlfriend, German national Marianne Schmucker, 25, in Forres, northern Scotland.

Detectives believe the couple may still be together, possibly with the child. The picture was released by police after Hewlett was included as one of seven convicted paedophiles featured in a "name and shame" article in a Sunday newspaper. They were highlighted as potentially dangerous men the police had lost track of.

Their names and pictures were published after the conviction of pervert Roy Whiting for the murder of Sarah Payne. Sarah's parents were meeting Home Secretary David Blunkett today in a bid to persuade him to allow parents to have controlled access to the Sex Offenders Register.

Murder victim Lesley Molseed died after she was knifed 12 times and sexually abused. Tax clerk Stefan Kiszko was convicted of the crime and spent 16 years in jail before his name was cleared. Mr Kiszko was released and a second inquiry team interviewed Hewlett, who lived in the area at the time of the killing. Hewlett was questioned, but there was insufficient evidence to press any charges and he was released.

The M.E.N. revealed how Hewlett - who has convictions for indecency against children - had been a suspect in 1975 before Mr Kiszko was arrested, but had given an alibi for his whereabouts. The alibi was not checked as police believed Mr Kiszko was the killer. 

The second police inquiry proved the alibi was false. 

Mr Kiszko died shortly after his release. Today, the man leading the inquiry, Det Chief Supt Max McLean, said:

"We know Raymond Hewlett leads a nomadic life. He often stays in communes and bed and breakfasts before moving on. "We also know that he has travelled widely throughout Europe and was in Italy in 1995, in Scotland in 1997 and that he was intending to travel to Italy again in 1997. "This case has never been closed. An incident room is based at Halifax and we have a list of suspects we are pursuing. Hewlett is one of those."

Hewlett used to live in Dineley Avenue, Todmorden, in 1975 and he has lived in Scotland and Ireland. He is of medium build, 5ft 8ins tall, with green/blue eyes and thinning brown hair.

He is also wanted for questioning in connection with an alleged serious sexual assault in Manchester in 1975. Anyone who can help is urged to ring the Lesley Molseed incident room on 01422-337048.

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