Woman 'set up fatal Rose Lane car park drugs deal'

A woman was forced to set up a meeting between rival drug gangs in Norwich in which a man was fatally wounded, a court has heard.

Honorato Alberto Christovao, 54, died of head injuries after an assault in Rose Lane car park on 10 February 2011.

Lucy Browne, 35, a prostitute, told Norwich Crown Court members of the GBen drug gang made her set up the meeting in which Mr Christovao was injured.

Three men from east London all deny Mr Christovao's murder.

Ms Browne said a friend had arranged to meet members of the GBen gang at her house in Borrowdale Drive, Norwich, on 9 February 2011.

Heroin and cocaine

In a recorded interview with police played to the court, Ms Browne said another member of the GBen gang had been kidnapped and beaten by the rival JJ gang the night before.

Members of the GBen gang then drove from London to Norwich on 9 February for revenge, she said.

Anthony Obariase, 28, of Norwich Road; Anton St Paul, 22, of Keogh Road, and Spencer Yiadom, 22, of Saville Road, all in Newham, east London, all deny Mr Christovao's murder.

Ms Browne, an occasional heroin user, told police Spencer Yiadom, known as "Ben", was the leader of the GBen gang.

The men, who included Mr St Paul and Mr Obariase, arrived at her house and pointed a sawn-off shotgun at her, she said.

They told her to call JJ, leader of the JJ gang, pretending to want to buy heroin and cocaine.

'Beat them up'

"I was to phone the number on the paper and go down to Rose Lane (car park) as if I wanted to buy drugs," she said in the interview.

"Basically for JJ and his gang to come out to me, where they were going to do the same thing back to them - to beat them up."

The men then left for the meeting, all dressed in black with a shotgun, she said.

Mr Christovao died on 14 February last year of injuries sustained in the attack.

"The first I knew that something had happened and that poor man was dead was when I was arrested," Ms Browne said.

Ms Browne has pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a separate prosecution and is awaiting sentence.

The trial continues.

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