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Queen Elizabeth Queen Mother hospital in Margate power cut accused to appear together for first time at Birmingham Crown Court

By Matt Leclere

A group of men charged with stealing electricity cables which left a hospital without power for hours will appear for the first time together in court later this month.

The five men are accused of causing the power cut at the Queen Elizabeth Queen Mother hospital in Margate and putting patients' lives at risk.

Four of the group stood before a judge at Birmingham Crown Court yesterday (Wednesday) while a fifth man, who due to appear in London in May, will now join them in the dock on April 26.

The QEQM hospital in Margate. Picture: Google (8000222)
The QEQM hospital in Margate. Picture: Google (8000222)

The four men were arrested in Birmingham the day after the incident on February 20, while the final member of the group was arrested and charged earlier this month.

Police allege the men tried stealing electricity cables from the hospital on Wednesday, February 20 causing damage at the hospital in Ramsgate Road.

The power outage at the hospital lasted for around four hours after the lights went out and equipment was affected at around 7.15pm.

All five men have been charged with conspiracy to steal and criminal damage with intent to endanger life.

Noel Mahoney, 23, of Bow, London, Patrick Kiely, 35, of Bromley-by-Bow, London, James Kiely, 37, of Shipston on Stour, Warwickshire and Jonathon Whitty, 38 of Bow, London, were the first men to be arrested and charged.

Thomas Kiely, 27, of Tower Hamlets in London, was charged on April 5.

Birmingham Crown Court. Picture: Google (8749704)
Birmingham Crown Court. Picture: Google (8749704)

The incident saw parts of the hospital including the emergency department lose electricity for at least four hours.

Patients were moved to operating theatres unaffected by the power cut which also saw two wards in the hospital plunged into darkness, East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust confirmed.

The site's contingency plan was implemented to keep patients safe until power was restored about 11pm.

The public was asked not to attend the emergency department and to keep ambulance services free for emergency life-threatening conditions.

A "full diversion" of emergency patients was initiated with eight people taken to the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, the ambulance service said at the time.

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