The Pre trial hearing was held looks like the actual trial will be a long one.
Six-week murder trial - News - Rossendale Free Press
FIVE youths accused of murdering 20-year-old Sophie Lancaster, from Bacup, face a six-week trial next month.
The teenagers, who appeared for a pre-trial review at Preston Crown Court today (Friday), are also charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Miss Lancaster’s boyfriend, Robert Maltby, 21, also from Bacup.
But they pleaded not guilty to both offences, which they are alleged to have carried out in an attack in Stubbylee Park last August, at a previous court appearance in December.
The trial, which is due to start on Monday 10 March, had been expected to last four weeks, but this has now been extended by a fortnight due to the large number of witnesses and evidence.
The court heard there would be 50 witnesses, many of whom would give their evidence via a video link due to their age.
Judge Anthony Russell QC also ruled that legal representatives in the case would not have to wear their gowns and wigs due to the age of the witnesses involved.
He said arrangements would be made to accommodate the Lancaster family away from the defendants’ families during the trial; they sat in the press gallery during today’s hearing. The defendants are all aged between 15 and 17.Two were remanded in custody, one of whom will appear in court again next Friday for a review of enquiries into his health. The other three were released on bail.
There is a write up of the Sophie concert in Preston earlier this month here: