Fugitive murderer Lord Lucan, who fled after he murdered his children’s nanny in 1974 when he meant to kill his wife, was officially declared dead on Wednesday.
George Bingham, the only son of the missing peer, was today granted a death certificate by a High Court judge in London 41 years after he vanished without a trace.
A High court judge had declared Lucan dead in 1999 but it has taken until now for a formal death certificate to be issued.
On 7 November 1974, nanny Sandra Rivett was bludgeoned to death in the basement of the Lucan family home in Lower Belgrave Street, Belgravia. Lady Lucan was also attacked.
Gambler Lucan, whose incompetence at the gaming tables earned him the nickname ‘Lucky’ Lucan had squandered his family fortune.
Lucan’s car was found abandoned and soaked in blood in Newhaven, East Sussex.
An inquest a year later ruled that he had killed Ms Rivett, who was nanny to his three children, after mistaking her for his estranged wife.
He vanished hours later and was never seen again.
George Bingham, who was seven when his father disappeared, and who was in court with his wife Anne-Sofie, had applied for the certificate under the Presumption of Death Act, which came into law in 2014.
He said: “I am very happy with the judgment of the court in this matter. It has been a very long time coming.”
Wednesday’s ruling means George Bingham his can inherit his father’s title and become the 8th Earl.
High Court judge Mrs Justice Asplin made the declaration that Lord Lucan is presumed dead on the basis that he had not been known to be alive for a period of at least seven years.