Tyne & Wear

Two face new charges in Raoul Moat shootings case

Raoul Moat
Image caption Raoul Moat went on the run for a week after the shootings

Two men accused of helping gunman Raoul Moat will face charges of attempting to murder the police officer shot and blinded by the former bouncer, prosecutors have said.

Karl Ness, 26, and Qhuram Awan, 23, will face these allegations next month.

Mr Ness will also face a charge of murdering Chris Brown, the only person killed by Moat.

Moat went on the run after wounding his ex-girlfriend, killing her new partner and wounding a police officer.

Judge ruling

He died after a six-hour stand-off on the banks of the River Coquet, in Rothbury, Northumberland, in July.

Kingsley Hyland, head of the Complex Casework Unit at the Northumbria branch of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), confirmed the pair would be charged with attempting to murder Pc Rathband, and Mr Ness would be charged with Chris Brown's murder.

The two appeared at Sheffield Crown Court on Monday.

During a brief hearing, Mr Ness and Mr Awan were expected to enter pleas to charges of conspiracy to murder and possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life.

But the judge, Mr Justice McCombe, ruled the pair will not now have to enter pleas until January.

Mr Ness, from Dudley, North Tyneside, will then face a charge of murdering Mr Brown, attempting to murder Pc Rathband, two charges of conspiracy to murder, one charge of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and one of robbing a fish shop.

Date not set

Mr Awan, from Blyth, Northumberland, will face a charge of attempting to murder Pc Rathband, one charge of conspiracy to murder, one charge of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and one of robbing a fish shop.

They are both due to stand trial on 24 January.

The judge said they will face a further plea and directions hearing in early January at Newcastle Crown Court, on a date to be fixed.

They were both remanded in custody.

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