Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Mildenhall: Lorry driver lied to protect family after murder at Willow Park traveller site

15:45 19 December 2012

Willow Park travellers

Willow Park travellers' site

Archant

A LORRY driver lied to police to protect his family following a double-shooting, a court heard.

shares

A LORRY driver lied to police to protect his family following a double-shooting, a court heard.

Michael Clinton, of Church Close, Beck Row, near Mildenhall, initally told police he was in the pub before owning up to seeing murderer Christopher Line, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

The prosecution allege Clinton helped Line by letting him into his home after he had killed two men at Willow Park, Beck Row, before giving him a change of clothing and driving him to Soham.

Clinton, 42, has denied doing an act intended to pervert the course of justice on March 15, 2011, by assisting Line to evade arrest.

He said: “I said I was in the pub because I was scared. Scared of the situation, everything that had happened and the comebacks.

“If Christopher Line could kill two people, what was going to happen to me?

“I just wanted to not be involved and that was the way I thought I could out. I hadn’t been in the pub that night at all.

“I told police I lied to protect my family.”

Defending Clinton, Matthew Gowen, said his client has no previous convictions.

The court heard that on March 15 last year David Castell, 29, and Shane Hill, 20, had travelled from Essex to set light to caravans on a plot occupied by Line and his employer San Vinden at Willow Park.

Mr Vinden left the site with his family and Line stayed behind and lain in wait for Mr Castell and Mr Hill armed with a shotgun.

After Mr Castell and Mr Hill had set light to a caravan and a trailer, Line had ambushed them and shot Mr Hill on a road to the site before shooting Mr Castell in his car.

Prosecuting Karim Khalil QC said when police initially spoke to Clinton he had denied seeing or hearing from Line on the night of the murders.

When police spoke to him again six months later, Clinton told police Line had turned up at his house and told him he had shot two people dead.

Clinton said he had allowed Line to stay at his house before taking him to Soham the next day but denied giving him a change of clothes.

The trial continues today.

Related articles

shares

0 comments

Thousands do not use the internet

As more and more vital services move online, figures have revealed more than 15% of Suffolk residents have either never used the internet, or not logged on in the past three months.

Speed restrictions on the A12 for resurfacing

Officials at the government’s new Highways England agency are hopeful that the speed limit on the A12 between Ipswich and the Essex border will be lifted by the end of the month.

Shelley Singh

Police are appealing for help in tracing a missing 30-year-old woman from Sudbury.

Paul Flatman has been sentenced after more than 6,000 chickens died at Hawksmill Farm

A farmer has been ordered to pay more than £12,000 and has been given a suspended prison sentence for failing to follow animal welfare advice.

Gerald West leaves Ipswich Crown Court

Oakwood School’s former deputy head teacher and one of its care workers have been given 12-month conditional discharges for assaulting pupils.

The old Oakwood School in Stowmarket.

The former headteacher of a Suffolk school has been jailed for seven years for sexual offences against children.

Abby Curtis who is opening Pump and Grind coffee shop in Great Colman Street with Tom Kerridge

The business team behind a new cafe have said they are disappointed they will not able to serve alcohol when opening for the first time on Saturday.

The company of Slice of Saturday Night

There was an Emile Zola quote on the front of the programme for West Suffolk College’s production of 60s musical, A Slice of Saturday Night: “If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.”

An aerial picture of Blythburgh

Police are attempting to trace the driver of a sandy-coloured large saloon-style car following a criminal damage incident on the A12.

Colchester High Street

Two sisters have been charged in connection with the theft of an 89-year-old woman’s purse in Colchester.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages