Monster who kidnapped bus full of school kids and buried them alive in sick ransom bid to be FREED on parole after 46yrs

A MONSTER who kidnapped a bus full of school children before burying them alive in a twisted ransom bid is set to be freed on parole after 46 years.

Frederick Newhall Woods, 70, was part of a sick trio who abducted 26 kids, aged five to 14, and their bus driver in California in 1976 in one of the biggest kidnapping plots in US history.

Woods and his accomplices hijacked the bus in the town of Chowchilla and transferred the youngsters and the driver into vans before driving them 100 miles away to Livermore.

All 27 captives were then buried alive in a quarry owned by Woods' father while the warped kidnappers demanded a $5million ransom in a bid apparently inspired by the movie Dirty Harry.

The terrified children and driver spent 16 hours underground before managing to dig themselves out and escape as the kidnappers slept.

Wood and fellow abductors Richard and James Schoenfeld pleaded guilty to kidnapping and were each handed 27 life sentences without the possibility of parole.

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However after the sentence was overturned in an appeals court to allow the trio to apply for parole, Richard Schoenfeld was released in 2012, while James Schoenfeld was let go in 2015.

It's understood Woods – the last of the three in prison – first became eligible for parole in 1982.

After his 18th hearing on Friday, he was approved for parole, Joe Orlando of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said, reports CNN.

The prison governor, however, has 30 days to review the decision and refer it to the full board review.

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Several of the victims told CNN in 2015 that the ordeal left them suffering life-long anxiety.

Darla Neal, who was ten at the time of the kidnapping, told the outlet: "I'm overwhelmed to the point that I had to leave work.

"I tell myself I should be able to shake this off and deal with it.

"Yet here I am, a mess."

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