A hitman who received a whole life jail term for the the gangland murders of a “Mr Big” and a mob enforcer has reportedly claimed he committing the killings in self defence.
Mark Fellows, 38, nicknamed The Iceman, murdered Salford mobster Paul Massey, 55, with an Uzi machine gun outside his home in the city in July 2015.
Three years later, Massey’s friend and gang associate, John Kinsella, 53, a martial arts expert from Liverpool, was murdered by Fellows in a second “cold-blooded” execution.
Fellows denied the murders and chose not to give evidence at his eight-week trial at Liverpool Crown Court but he has broken his silence, according to the Sunday People newspaper, with a 1,000-word confession from his cell at HMP Whitemoor.
When passing sentence Mr Justice Davis described Fellows as a contract killer, a “gun for hire, prepared to kill whoever you were asked to kill”. He added: “I have never had to deal with a contract killer of your kind before. There are few judges who have. Just punishment in your case requires you to be kept in prison for the rest of your life.”
But Fellows, who is appealing the length of his sentence, now disputes he was a paid assassin and told the Sunday People: “The reason I shot Paul Massey is because he tried to have me shot at the home I share with my partner and children.
“Massey wanted me harmed or killed and I knew the threat wasn’t going to go away, I knew Massey would keep sending people to my home.”
Fellows claimed an attempt was made on his life at his home in Weaste, Salford, in February 2015 which he understood was orchestrated by “Mr Big” Massey after he started dealing drugs on his patch.
He explained that Kinsella later heard he had gunned down Massey and was out for revenge so he shot him too rather than wait for Kinsella to find him.
Fellows also denied he had the nickname The Iceman.
Massey’s partner Louise Lydiate told the Sunday People that Massey was not involved in drugs and at the time of his death was a “peacemaker” on the streets of Saflord.
She said: ” I don’t buy any of Fellows’s confession. It’s all about trying to get off his whole life sentence.
“I find it so distressing. He’s known from the start – why put us through all this?”
Fellows was sentenced in January along with co-defendant Steven Boyle, 36, who acted as “spotter”in the Kinsella murder and was jailed for life with a minimum term of 33 years.
Jurors heard Massey and Kinsella were murdered as a result of a deadly feud between rival gangs in Salford – the A-Team – linked to the victims and a splinter faction the defendants were with.