Hartlepool man charged with murder

A HARTLEPOOL man has been charged with the murder of a 45-year-old man.

John Newton, from Redcar, died of fatal head injuries on March 21 this year.

A 48-year-old man, said to be from the Hartlepool area, has been charged with his murder and will appear at Teesside Magistrates Court today.

Three men have already been found guilty of the murder and kidnap of Mr Newton and have started jail sentences.

George Thomas Jnr, 52, of Charlbury Road, Stephen Thomas, 30, of Penhill Close, and Andrew Jackson, 25, of Cornforth Avenue, all Middlesbrough, stood trial at Teesside Crown Court and were handed life sentences for murder, with five-year terms to run concurrently for kidnap.

George Thomas Snr, 77, of Wykeham Close, Redcar, was cleared of any involvement and walked free.

The jury was unable to reach a verdict on a fifth man accused of murder, Lee Woodier, 25, of Shelley Road, Middlesbrough, but convicted him on the charge of kidnap.

He will face a retrial next year.