We didn’t smug­gle acid into night­club

Al­leged vic­tim de­nies spiked drinks row

Daily Record - - NEWS - JAMES CAVEN re­porters@dai­lyrecord.co.uk

A CLUBBER who was al­legedly sprayed with acid by Towie star Ferne McCann’s ex-boyfriend yes­ter­day de­nied his group smug­gled the liq­uid into the night­club and started a fight.

Ruam Mota is one of 16 peo­ple in­jured at an event at the Wringer and Man­gle club in Hack­ney, Lon­don, in the early hours of April 17.

Arthur Collins, 25, the for­mer lover of TV star Ferne, and his friend An­dre Phoenix, 21, deny five counts of caus­ing gre­vi­ous bod­ily harm with in­tent and 11 counts of as­sault lead­ing to ac­tual bod­ily harm.

Mota said he was in the club with his friends Makai Brown, Kwami Li­cor­ish and a man called Alex when they were sprayed.

The friends deny a claim that Collins over­heard them talk­ing about spik­ing drinks, caus­ing Collins to in­sult them and take a bot­tle off them, trig­ger­ing the row.

Mota told Wood Green Crown Court in Lon­don that it was “hard to hear” con­ver­sa­tions in the club.

He de­nied a claim by Ge­orge Carter-Stephen­son QC, defending Collins, of Brox­bourne, Hert­ford­shire, that a group mem­ber said: “No you spike her, you do it.”

Carter-Stephen­son said it had at­tracted Collins’s at­ten­tion, and Collins told them: “You are d***heads, you are not spik­ing any­one.”

Brown then replied: “Don’t f ****** speak to me like that, how about we spike you, you mug,” the lawyer added, which Mota also de­nied.

He also said he did not see a small bot­tle be­ing taken from Brown.

CCTV showed Mota try­ing to ap­proach Collins but be­ing in­ter­cepted by Phoenix, of Tot­ten­ham, Lon­don, the court was told.

Carter-Stephen­son asked Mota about a chat between the friends that was caught on CCTV.

Mota de­nied the lawyer’s claim that he could not say what the con­ver­sa­tion was about be­cause “it will im­pli­cate you and your group in the pos­ses­sion of a caus­tic sub­stance”.

The jury heard Mota had pre­vi­ously car­ried a lock knife on the street, and had been in­volved in a rob­bery.

Carter-Stephen­son said: “You are not afraid to use vi­o­lence if the need arises.” Mota replied: “I don’t need to use vi­o­lence un­less I am defending my­self.”

AC­CUSED Arthur Collins

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