Driver who captured crucial evidence in lead up to 'revenge raid' at Northamptonshire travellers' site awarded for bravery
A driver who played a key part in convicting an 'army' of drug-debt enforcers who attacked a Northamptonshire travellers' site has been recognised for his bravery.
In July 2016, a botched cocaine deal outside a Northamptonshire pub led to a 'revenge raid' by the dealers on the Greenfields Travellers site near Braybrooke.
The terrifying attack saw a 'small army' of debt enforcers attack the caravan site with weapons. Caravans were smashed up, a man was beaten bloody and a 17-year-old boy was blasted at close range with a shotgun.
But the perpetrators might not have been caught if not for the bravery and presence of mind of one motorist who captured crucial evidence for the police on his dashcam.
The motorist - who asked to remain anonymous - was driving his car when he suspected that others vehicles around him - driven by the drug collectors - were acting suspiciously, and switched on his dashcam to record what happened.
What he didn't know was he had just captured evidence crucial for police that linked the attackers from the pub in Corby to the caravan site in Braybrooke, which helped convict them for the raid.
Now, the driver has been commended for his actions by Her Honour Judge Adrienne Lucking and rewarded with a Northamptonshire High Sheriff Award for bravery.
At an award ceremony at Northampton Crown Court last week (Nov 1), Judge Lucking told the motorist: "[This man] demonstrated exception presence of mind and recorded the suspicious activity of the vehicles as well as courage in following the vehicles.
"He provided evidence to the police and gave evidence before the jury about what he had seen.
"It played an important and substantial role in securing convictions in this case."
He was presented with the award by the High Sheriff of Northamptonshire Nicholas Robertson as well as a cheque for £1,000.0
In the botched cocaine deal outside the Chequered Flag pub in Corby in 2016, a large amount of cash was stolen from a drug dealer by one of a member of a travellers' family, which led to the late-night revenge raid.
Photos published by police on the morning after show how caravans had been smashed and cars were badly damaged. Several vehicles even appeared to have been peppered with buckshot from shotguns.
The ringleaders in the attack were named as Nathan Hadfield, 36, from Burton Latimer, and Richard Loveridge, 27, formerly from Ecton Lane, Northampton.
A total of 13 men were convicted or pleaded guilty to their parts in the attack - but the prosecutor, Christopher Donnellan - says the squad may have been made up of some 30 people.