'I DIDN'T KILL ANYONE' Karen Matthews denies being ‘Britain’s worst mum’ despite kidnapping daughter Shannon in bid for £50,000 reward cash

The 43-year-old said she was made a 'scapegoat' as she continues to protest her innocence

09 May 2018 - 11:01

KAREN Matthews has denied being "Britain's worst mum" despite kidnapping daughter Shannon in a bid for £50,000 reward cash.

Ten years on from the sick abduction, the 43-year-old has insisted she knew nothing about the plot that shocked the nation.

The mum-of-seven was found guilty of kidnapping her nine-year-old daughter Shannon Matthews from their home in Dewsbury Moor, West Yorks.

Police discovered the child drugged and tethered in the base of a bed in nearby Batley Kerr a month after the manhunt was sparked.

Matthews was seen shamelessly making public appeals for information on her daughter's whereabouts - despite knowing where she was all along.

But she told the Mirror she was made a "scapegoat", saying: “From the start I didn’t know where she was. Others were involved. I didn’t have a clue.

 Shannon Matthews was only nine when she was abducted, and found drugged and tethered in the base of a bed
 
Shannon Matthews was only nine when she was abducted, and found drugged and tethered in the base of a bed
 Karen Matthews held her daughter's teddy bear in an emotional plea for her daughter's return - despite knowing where her daughter was all along
 
Karen Matthews held her daughter's teddy bear in an emotional plea for her daughter's return - despite knowing where her daughter was all along

“You can’t kidnap your own child. I know the truth and I wasn’t involved in it. I still have nightmares thinking that it’s all going to happen again."

Shannon was found at a flat belonging to Michael Donovan - the uncle of Karen's then-boyfriend Craig Meehan, who had nothing do with the snatch.

Matthews and Donovan devised the elaborate plot in a bid to claim the £50,000 reward money for finding Shannon.

Donovan was also jailed as Matthews' accomplice - but the mum maintains she had nothing to do with it.

 A West Yorkshire Police handout video of Karen Matthews, who was found guilty of kidnapping her own daughter in 2008
 
A West Yorkshire Police handout video of Karen Matthews, who was found guilty of kidnapping her own daughter in 2008
 Karen Matthews earlier this year. She is living under a new identity in a town in South England
Doug Seeburg
Karen Matthews earlier this year. She is living under a new identity in a town in South England
 Karen Matthews was released after four years of her eight year jail term
David New
Karen Matthews was released after four years of her eight year jail term

She protested: “I’m not Britain’s worst mum. I didn’t kill anybody.

“Baby P’s mum and Maxine Carr don’t get the abuse that I do.

“None of it’s true. I’m on the edge. It makes me want to kill myself but I’d never do that.

"I’m scared I’ll die lonely and alone.”

 Shannon's mum Karen and boyfriend Craig Meehan campaigned tirelessly for Shannon's safe return
News Group Newspapers Ltd
Shannon's mum Karen and boyfriend Craig Meehan campaigned tirelessly for Shannon's safe return
 Karen Matthews, now 43, is a born again Christian and lives under a different identity in a town in South England
 
Karen Matthews, now 43, is a born again Christian and lives under a different identity in a town in South England
 Shannon, who would now be an adult, also assumed another identity after the traumatic kidnap
 
Shannon, who would now be an adult, also assumed another identity after the traumatic kidnap

The child snatcher was released from prison after serving just half of her eight year sentence and is now living under a new identity in the South of England.

The born-again Christian now works in a Christian charity shop, where she says she doesn't feel judged

She denied claims she was selling sandwiches to the ­homeless that had been handed out free by Pret A Manger shops.

She said: “I never sold them I gave them to the homeless.

“This woman that’s a church person was handing them out.

“It was getting dark earlier and I used to go to help pick them up and take them to the homeless around the station. Sometimes I’d take them to the ­Salvation Army."

She added: "It makes me sick what was said, that’s not me. I was doing it out of the goodness of my heart.”

Shannon Matthews was given a new identity and is now living with a new family.

Karen's six other children were taken into care and have also been given new identities for protection.

 

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