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23 August 2011, 15:07
Four men have been found guilty of intimidating a key witness in connection with the Blayne Ridgeway (pictured) murder trial.
Byron Haines, 20, of Henley Street, George Kirika, aged 20, of Woodin’s Way, Dexter Williams, aged 22, of Coriander Way, and 19-year-old Callum Spencer of Nettlebed Mead were all found guilty at Reading Crown Court after the jury returned a unanimous verdict.
The four men assaulted and threatened to kill a man who was a key witness in the trial of Eze Eke. The 17-year-old was convicted in December for stabbing 22-year-old father Blayne Ridgeway to death outside the Que Pasa bar in Oxford in May 2010.
Haines was also found guilty of breaching his Asbo by threatening and intimidating the witness.
Haines, Williams and Spencer have been remanded to appear back at Reading Crown Court on 30 September. Kirika has been released on bail to appear back at court on the same date.
Detective Con Justin Walsh said:
“I have the greatest admiration for the victim in this case who, despite what happened to him, went on to give evidence in a murder trial.
“The victim maintained that he had to tell the truth and he had to do the right thing, despite all that had happened to him.
“The police and the criminal justice system are reliant on members of the public supporting cases and feeling confident in giving evidence without the fear of reprisals.
“Thames Valley Police is committed to supporting victims and witnesses and this conviction should reassure the public that we will prosecute offenders who attempt to pervert the course of justice.”
Det Insp Simon Morton said:
“This sends a clear message to those that think they can interfere with an investigation; that if you do, expect to go to jail.”