Six in court on arson and criminal damage charges which include horse’s death at West Meadows travellers’ site in Ipswich

A heavy police presence is nowon the gate of the
West Meadows travellers' site.
Five men and a t

A heavy police presence is nowon the gate of the West Meadows travellers' site. Five men and a teenage boy have been arrested after caravans were set alight and a horse died at the West Meadows travellers site in Ipswich last night. - Credit: Archant

Five men and a teenage boy have appeared before magistrates charged with setting light to two caravans with intent to endanger life three days after an alleged double murder at an Ipswich travellers’ site.

The six also face a criminal damage charge which includes a horse at West Meadows allegedly being beaten to death.

The particulars of the charge accuse the males of destroying numerous motor vehicles, static caravans, buildings, street furniture and a horse.

Today at South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court the accused appeared in three separate hearings to ensure the dock was not overcrowded.

Ernest Oakley, 22, of Woodlands Way, West Meadows – who is understood to be the brother of alleged murder victim Nathan Oakley, 18 – and Swaley Smith, 23, of Barnsley, were the first to appear.

No bail applications were made.

William Harbour, 31, of Woodlands Way, West Meadows, Henry Harbour, 20, and Levi Harbour, 19, both of Runwell, near Chelmsford were the next to appear.

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The two younger Harbours had bail applications made by their lawyer Michael Edmonds. However magistrates declined the requests.

The third hearing involved a 14-year-old boy from Essex, who cannot be identified legally due to his age.

The teenager was given conditional bail.

All six defendants’ cases were sent to Ipswich Crown Court.

Their next appearance will be on January 11.

The allegations stem from alleged incidents which occurred around 10.10pm on Sunday at West Meadows.

Last Thursday, Nathan Oakley and 32-year-old Barry Street, who both lived at West Meadows, died in a double-stabbing.

A teenage boy from Ipswich, who cannot be named due to legal restrictions, was charged with murder and appeared in court on Monday. He is remanded in custody until his next appearance at Ipswich Crown Court on January 9.