Old Bailey: Feud between cousins ended with death of Liam Hamilton in Poplar

By Rob Virtue on January 28, 2014 2:36 PM |

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A family feud resulted in the death of a 32-year-old in Poplar, a jury at The Old Bailey heard this week.

Liam Hamilton died from a stab wound on July 26 last year. Four of his cousins are on trial over the killing.

On Monday, the jury heard a police interview with James Hamilton, 27, from New Festival Avenue, who is charged with violent disorder over the incident.

In it he said there was a history of bad blood between the cousins.

On the night it erupted into violence he said he was on a bus and received a phone call saying his brothers were in trouble.

He ran to the corner of Simpson's Road where the disturbance was taking place between members of the Hamilton family. At that moment Liam and two of his brothers arrived.

"When I got there everyone seemed calm. It was a calm scene," he said. "Then a black Renault pulled up and Liam, Gerald and Sean got out.

"They jumped out of the car and the first thing I heard was one of my cousins saying 'the gang's here'. Then they set upon my brothers. They were outnumbered like two on one.

"Then I heard somone say 'Liam's been stabbed'. I panicked and walked off. I didn't want to be near that situation. My heart sank and I was in a daydream."

James claimed the next day his brother Paul admitted to him he had stabbed Liam, who died in Royal London Hospital at 11.40pm on Friday night.

Earlier in the morning's court proceedings, witness Adrian McMahon told how in the afternoon before Liam was killed, he saw the victim's sister Fiona attacked by the partner of one of the defendants, Thomas Hamilton.

This was the second altercation between the families that day.

He said he was walking to work and Fiona was some way in front of him with two children. He recalled that she then became embroiled in an argument.

"The other woman jumped over the wall and grabbed hold of Fiona with the male [Thomas] following her," said Mr McMahon.

"I said 'not in front of the kids' and tried to get them indoors, I looked back and Fiona was on the floor."

Noel Hamilton, 35, from Manchester Road on the Isle of Dogs, Paul Hamilton, 30, from Woodstock Terrace in Poplar, and Thomas Hamilton, 36, of Poplar High Street, all deny murder.

James Hamilton denies a charge of violent disorder.

The trial is due to last until mid-February.

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