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Two charged in fugitive Moat search


Police are hunting fugitive gunman Raoul Moat

Police are hunting fugitive gunman Raoul Moat

Police are hunting fugitive gunman Raoul Moat

Two men arrested in connection with the hunt for fugitive Raoul Moat will appear in court charged with conspiracy to commit murder and possessing a firearm with intent.

Northumbria Police said Karl Ness, 26, from Dudley in North Tyneside, and Qhuram Awan, 23, from Blyth in Northumberland, will appear at Newcastle Magistrates Court.

They were both detained on Tuesday after being found walking in Rothbury, Northumberland, the area where the intensive police search for Moat, 37, has now entered its sixth day.

Ness and Awan were found on Tuesday as police wrestled with what they thought was a hostage situation. Detectives had feared fugitive Moat kidnapped two men after allegedly shooting his ex-partner and killing her new lover.

But Ness and Awan were eventually arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit murder.

Moat is believed to be holed up in the remote countryside surrounding the village, where scores of highly-trained officers on the ground, dog teams and helicopters engaged are combing through the countryside.

The suspect is facing more appeals to give himself up, while his mother said she thinks her son would be "better off dead".

On Wednesday night search activity in the Rothbury area intensified as dozens of armed police officers escorted a man who knows Moat near where it is believed the suspect had been hiding out. It is understood the man, who was wearing a flak jacket and has not previously been involved in the case, was helping officers look at places Moat has previously used.

Moat's mother, Josephine Healey, who has had little contact with Moat for 18 years, said he was now a "totally different character" to the son she remembered. Referring to photographs showing a cherubic child with sandy hair, she told the Daily Telegraph: "This man does not look like my son. I feel like he hasn't been my son since he was 19 years old.

"He now has a totally different character, attitude and manner. Now when I see him I don't recognise him at all. He would be better off dead. If I was to make an appeal I would say he would be better dead."

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