Lorry driver in court charged with killing family

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The Independent Online

A Portuguese lorry driver appeared at crown court for the first time today charged with killing a family of six in a motorway pile-up.

Paulo Jorge Nogueira da Silva, 46, appeared before Chester Crown Court charged with six counts of causing death by dangerous driving.



During the short hearing he was joined by an interpreter in the dock and spoke only to confirm his name.



The driver, of Calle Romero, Tutana, Murcia, in Spain, was in the dock over the deaths of David and Michelle Statham and their four children.



A plea and case management hearing will take place on January 13 next year. Nogueira has been remanded in custody.



The Statham family was being buried today after a funeral at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Llandudno, North Wales.



The coffins containing the family were taken into the church on Monday evening and relatives stayed with the group through the night.



Chef Mr Statham, 38, and his 33-year-old wife were returning home to Llandudno with the youngsters after visiting relatives in Birmingham on the night of October 20 this year when the crash happened.



Their silver people carrier burst into flames after it was involved in a five-vehicle pile-up between junctions 16 and 17 on the M6 northbound carriageway.



The couple - who had been together for 19 years - died at the scene along with sons Reece, 13, Jay, nine, Mason, 20 months, and 10-week-old baby daughter Ellouise.



Tributes poured in for the popular family who moved to the North Wales seaside town four years ago from Birmingham.



At an inquest last week into the death of the family at Warrington Town Hall, Coroner Nicholas Rheinberg heard the Stathams were so badly burnt in the crash they could only be identified by dental records.