Identical twins Christopher and Anthony Langford shared a love of football, a passion for booze, and a life of begging on London’s streets. When they vanished from their usual haunts no one missed them, because they were street people who had sunk to the bottom of the social pit.

But on FEBRUARY 27th, 1996, Islington Police received an anonymous letter claiming that the twins had been murdered at the one-bedroom council flat of David Dillon, 38. an Irishman from Cork.

The initial investigation of the flat in Copenhagen Street yielded nothing, and Dillon, heavily tattooed, with his grey hair in a pony-tail, was convincing in his denials of knowing about any such murders.

The mystery deepened when a month later the body of Christopher Langford was found floating in Regent’s Canal in Islington. It might have been an accident – except that two weeks after that the body of Anthony was recovered from the same canal.

Then another street person came forward. He had known and liked the twins, he said. And he had heard that David Dillon had boasted about killing them in his flat, claiming he had beaten them to death, using a cart wheel to crush the skull of one of them.

The informer told the police: “Dillon said he took the bodies on a shopping trolley to the canal and dumped them in the water.” To another witness Dillon was alleged to have said: “Don’t worry, the twins have gone for a long swim.”

There appeared to be no motive, beyond Dillon’s long-standing reputation for unprovoked violence. Since he did not give evidence on his own behalf at his Old Bailey trial in April, 1997, no one knows for sure what his motivation was. He was given two life sentences after being told by the judge, “You present a continuing danger to the public.”