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Lennon fans up in arms

New York: Mark Chapman, the man who murdered John Lennon (in the picture), could be released from jail next month in a move that has sparked fears of retribution from Beatles fans. Mr. Chapman will have a parole hearing in the week beginning October 4, officials at the New York State Parole Division said. It will be held behind closed doors. But if Mr. Chapman is released after 24 years in prison, some Lennon fans have already threatened to take action. News of the parole hearing has spread on the Internet and dozens of websites have been filling up with messages from fans around the world, many already promising to take revenge on the man who gunned down Lennon on December 8, 1980 as he arrived at his New York apartment building off Central Park. —

© Guardian Newspapers Limited 2004

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