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Wednesday, 12 January 2011
ARCHIBALD THOMSON HALL
The Killer Butler or Monster Butler, so named as he committed his murders while working in service to members of the British aristocracy as a butler. Hall, also known as Roy Fontaine, was a Glaswegian thief and confidence trickster with numerous convictions and prison sentences by the time he committed his first murder, of an ex-cellmate, whom he shot and buried after an argument over some jewellery stolen from Hall's employer. Hall moved to London and began serving an elderly ex-MP and his wife, and with accomplice Michael Kitto, he killed and buried them both after late-night plans to rob them were disturbed. They then killed a female acquaintance and dumped her body in a barn after she refused to destroy a fur coat which was potentially incriminating evidence, and lastly Hall murdered his half-brother, a convicted child molester who was asking too many questions, before beginning a journey to Scotland with the intention of again burying the body. Having stopped at a hotel for the night when the weather became too hazardous for driving, Hall and Kitto were caught when the hotelier, concerned that two suspicious-looking guests may not pay their bill, called the police. They found the body in Hall's car boot, and Hall later showed them the three gruesome burial sites. After trials in London and Edinburgh, Hall received four life sentences and Kitto three, with one judge recommending that Hall should never be freed. This recommendation was upheld when the list of confirmed whole life tariff prisoners was published, and Hall was the eldest prisoner on the list. He publicly requested the right to die in 1995, and did so of a stroke in 2002, while still in prison. He was 78. Three years earlier, he had published his autobiography.