TWO men accused of murdering a Sunderland grandfather have appeared in court.
Nicholas Rought, 45, of Princess Street, Shiney Row, and Stuart Smith, 42, of no fixed address, spoke only to confirm their names during yesterday’s hearing at Newcastle Crown Court.
Also due to appear was Paul Tate, of Cambridge Road, Silksworth, Sunderland. However, as revealed in the Echo, the 48-year-old was found dead in his cell at Holme House Prison in Stockton by prison staff at 5.45am on Friday.
The circumstances surrounding his death remain unclear. Police and prison authorities have now launched an investigation.
John Elvidge QC, said: “Paul Tate was found dead in custody, is the information I have received, on Friday morning last week.”
Mr Elvidge said that the case of the other two defendants would proceed and they are expected to enter their pleas at a hearing at the court on December 10. They were remanded in custody.
The men are accused of the murder of John “Jonty” Hall, 46, of Burn Terrace, Shiney Row, Sunderland. Mr Hall died as a result of multiple injuries.