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Teenagers charged over M1 fire

Six teenagers have been charged with causing a fire that closed the M1 in both directions.

The massive blaze at a scrapyard under an elevated section of the motorway caused transport chaos for days in April.

The six suspects are among a total of 10 teenagers charged with a spate of arson attacks across Barnet, north London, Scotland Yard said.

An M1 motorway bridge was damaged by flames, forcing the closure of junctions one to four on April 15.

Luke Matthews, 18, of Hatfield, Herts, Johno Johnson, 18, of Millfield Road, Edgware, and four other teenagers, who cannot be named, were charged on Monday with a string of arson offences, including the M1 fire.

Damien McQueen, 18, of Harcourt Avenue, Edgware, Hannah Parker, 18, of Symphony Close, Edgware, and two other youths were charged over two acts of arson elsewhere in the area.

They have all been granted bail to appear at Hendon Magistrates' Court on Tuesday next week. The youngest suspect over the spate of fires was 14, the force said.

About 40 firefighters tackled the M1 blaze which broke out between the M25 and North Circular Road.

It was days before the motorway was fully reopened as urgent repairs took place. Many drivers were forced to change their route amid heavy traffic for FA Cup semi-finals taking place at Wembley Stadium.

A number of gas cylinders were involved in the blaze forcing about 50 people living in properties near the scrapyard to be temporarily evacuated.


From Belfast Telegraph