London hotel hammer attack: Man charged with the attempted murder of three women

Three tourists were bludgeoned after disturbing an intruder in their room at the four-star Cumberland Hotel

A man has been charged with the attempted murder of three women at a hotel, police said tonight.

Three wealthy tourists were bludgeoned in a hammer attack after disturbing an intruder in their room at the four-star Cumberland Hotel near Marble Arch in London's West End in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Philip Spence, 32, of no fixed abode, has been charged with three counts of attempted murder and one of aggravated burglary, Scotland Yard said.

Spence will appear in custody at Westminster Magistrates Court tomorrow, with Thomas Efremi, 56, of Upper Handa Walk, Islington, north London, who is charged with handling stolen goods and fraud by false representation, and James Moss, 33, of Hanley Road, Finsbury Park, north London, who is charged with handling stolen goods.

Carly Baker, 31, of Hanley Road, Finsbury Park, has been charged with handling stolen goods. She has been bailed to appear at Westminster Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

A 34-year-old man has been bailed to return pending further inquiries on a date in May.

One woman is in a critical condition and the other two remain in hospital though their injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.

It is understood that the three women, who are all from the United Arab Emirates, had deliberately left their door unlocked because they were staying in the hotel as part of a large family group.

They were sleeping with three children, who were unharmed, in two adjoining rooms.

The wealthy family, who had come to London for shopping and sightseeing, arrived in the UK between April 3 and 5 and the women had visited large West End stores on Saturday.

The Cumberland Hotel is near Europe's busiest shopping street, Oxford Street, and has 1,000 rooms including a Jimi Hendrix suite.