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Man pleads not guilty to causing criminal damage to Sycamore Gap tree

Two men have appeared in court today (May 15) accused of criminal damage to Northumberland's Sycamore Gap in September last year.

Daniel Graham, 38, of Milbeck Stables, Carlisle and Adam Carruthers, 31, of Church Street, Wigton, both appeared at Newcastle's Magistrates' Court on Wednesday afternoon.

They were both charged with criminal damage to property of a value over £5,000, namely that the two men damaged a sycamore tree to the value of £622,191. The tree belonged to the National Trust.

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A second charge was of criminal damage to property under £5,000. This was damage to Hadrian's Wall, with the damage caused assessed at £1,144. Both offences were alleged to have been committed on September 28, 2023.

Graham pleaded not guilty to both offences where as Carruthers entered no plea to either offence.

The case was heard in one of the larger crown courtrooms in the Newcastle Combined Court building, due to the case sparking a huge public interest. Both men wore black suits with red ties and only spoke to confirm their names, addresses and enter their pleas.

They have both been released on unconditional bail until their next hearing which will take place at Newcastle Crown Court on the morning of Wednesday, June 12.

Read more on manchestereveningnews.co.uk