Wright appears at Old Bailey

MURDER accused Steve Wright has appeared at the Old Bailey today for a hearing into the deaths of five women killed in Suffolk.The 49-year-old went before High Court judge Mr Justice Gross this morning for a review of how the case is progressing.

MURDER accused Steve Wright has appeared at the Old Bailey today for a hearing into the deaths of five women killed in Suffolk.

The 49-year-old went before High Court judge Mr Justice Gross this morning for a review of how the case is progressing.

At his last court appearance at Ipswich Crown Court on May 1, Wright pleaded not guilty to murdering Ipswich prostitutes Gemma Adams, 25, Tania Nicol, 19, Anneli Alderton, 24, Paula Clennell, 24, and Annette Nicholls, 29.

It is understood today's hearing is a routine exercise.


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It is the first time Wright, of London Road, has appeared in court outside Ipswich although suggestions that the hearing could lead to the location of the trial being shifted have been dismissed by the Crown Prosecution Service.

However the presiding judge in the case has been changed with Mr Justice Gross taking over the case from Mr Justice Calvert-Smith.

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At Wright's last appearance Mr Justice Calvert-Smith said that the trial of Steve Wright should take place in Ipswich and he set a provisional date for it to start on January 14 next year.

All five women Wright stands accused of murdering had worked as prostitutes in Ipswich's red-light district.

Their bodies were found in rural locations on the outskirts of Ipswich during a ten-day period in December last year.

The Old Bailey, officially known as London's Central Criminal Court, is probably the most famous criminal court in the world, and has been the capital's principal criminal court for centuries.

It hears cases remitted to it from all over England and Wales as well as the Greater London area.

Do you think the trial should be held in Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Factfile:

The bodies of Tania Nicol, Gemma Adams, Anneli Alderton, Annette Nicholls and Paula Clennell were found in remote rural locations around Ipswich between December 2 and 12.

Each of the five had been working as prostitutes in Ipswich's red light district.

Tania Nicol was the first woman to be reported missing, on October 30.

Tom Stephens, 37, of Trimley St Martin, was arrested on December 18 and later released on bail. Proceedings against him were dropped last month.

Steve Wright, 48, of London Road, Ipswich, was arrested on December 19 and later charged with the murders of all five women.

He last appeared at Ipswich Crown Court on May 1 where he denied murdering the girls.

Somebody's Daughter:

The Somebody's Daughter Memorial Fund was launched in conjunction with Ipswich Borough Council in the wake of the killings of Gemma Adams, Tania Nicol, Anneli Alderton, Annette Nicholls and Paula Clennell.

All had worked in the sex trade and all had drug habits.

As a legacy to the five women, and in a bid to prevent others from walking in their same desperate footsteps, The Somebody's Daughter appeal was given a mandate of helping vulnerable young people in Ipswich.

The ultimate goal is to raise enough money to open a safe house where those embroiled in prostitution and drugs can seek support and guidance.

Among the trustees of the Somebody's Daughter appeal, a registered charity, are Ipswich Town chairman David Sheepshanks, borough council leader Liz Harsant and Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover.

Donations to the memorial fund can be made online at www.eveningstar.co.uk, in person at Ipswich Borough Council's customer service centre in the Town Hall, by calling 01473 433777, or by sending a cheque, made payable to Somebody's Daughter Memorial Fund, to PO Box 772, Ipswich Borough Council, Grafton House, 15-17 Russell Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, IP1 2DE.

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