North East Wales

Home Bargains car park victim killed in 'gang revenge'

Mark Mason Image copyright Family picture

A man killed a rival drugs gang member in a knife attack at a Home Bargains car park and said "we got him good", a murder trial has heard.

Jake Melia admits murdering Mark Mason, 48, next to the Rhyl store last October but three other alleged members of the same drug gang deny murder.

Prosecution witness Stephen John Jones said the victim was involved an attack on two rival gang members.

He told Mold Crown Court Mr Mason's death was a result of retaliation.

Mr Jones, who was working for the Pensarn Crew, said Melia and defendant Jamie Davies, 21, were getting "tooled up with knives" to get revenge after they had come under attack earlier that day.

The jury heard father-of-two Mr Mason used drugs and was involved in selling for another gang.

Mr Jones lived at a Rhyl "safe house" which was used by the Pensarn Crew gang to supply heroin and cocaine.

The day before Mr Mason's death, the victim asked Mr Jones if the Pensarn Crew would be working at The Cob - an area of land near Rhyl's Marine Lake - the following day.

"I told the lads I was working for, there might be a bit of trouble the next day," Mr Jones, 43, originally from Wrexham, told the court via video link.

"I was working for the Pensarn lads and I didn't want to see them get done in."

The court heard Mr Davies and Melia, both from Liverpool, went out to sell drugs at The Cob and they left carrying fishing rods with them, which the prosecution say was a cover.

When they returned, Mr Jones told the court he knew something had happened as their clothes were wet and muddy.

They said they had been in the river and had been attacked by two guys in balaclavas with machetes and knives, jurors were told.

"I don't think they were injured. They seemed a bit shook up. They thought it was Mason," he told the jury.

'Very withdrawn'

He told the court they then spoke to others on the phone and left with a knife each.

"I was going to go with them to help them - but I was not planning on murdering someone," Mr Jones told the court.

"I did not go - they said that they had it under control."

After the alleged murder, Mr Jones told the court he was asked to take money and personal belongings from the safe house in Wellington Road and meet Melia and Mr Davies.

Fellow defendants Anthony Baines, 31, and Mark Ennis, 31, both of Liverpool, were also with them - and Mr Jones told the court Mr Davies said he had slashed the victim's face.

Mr Jones told the jury he heard Melia said something like "we got him good". Mr Mason was stabbed 22 times.

He added Mr Baines, who the jury heard was Mr Jones' "boss", and Mr Ennis was "dead quiet, very withdrawn".

Mr Jones called the police on 4 November, eight days after the attack and said: "I don't agree with murder."

Mr Davies, Mr Baines and Mr Ennis all deny murder. The trial continues.

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