Tragic Daniel’s brutal ‘Take away’ killers found guilty.
Thursday 11th August 2016 @ 19:42 by Nigel P.
Ashton News

The Brutal killers of Ashton Man Daniel Smith have been jailed for life at Manchester Crown Court after jurors found them guilty of his murder at a homeless camp under disused railway arches in Salford in January this year.

The men fellow rough sleepers Luke Benson and Adam Acton both 25, callously beat Daniel to death over a protracted period of hours, even taking a food break to go to Macdonalds and buy more of the deadly drug SPICE,  before returning to find Daniel dead.

The killers had trussed Daniel up under a sheet  before they left on their take away and drugs errand .

The savage attack with fists,feet and a rounders bat was said to be in revenge for an earlier altercation between  Benson and Daniel where Daniel was alleged to have hit Benson in the groin before Benson retaliated by choking Daniel unconscious.

The animosity was savagely revisited several hours later when Daniel awoke from a drug induced stupor and urinated on a fellow rough sleeper’s bedding.

This caused a commotion and Benson and Acton took upon themselves to use the incident to carry on the feud from earlier in the day.

When the men and other friends amongst the camp dwellers realised that Daniel was dead, they tried to cover their tracks by burning Daniel’s body.

Several including Acton’s girlfriend Amanda Briggs were found guilty of perverting the course of justice.

Emergency services were called after being alerted by flames and smoke that were seen coming  from the camp just a quarter mile from the bright lights of Manchester City Centre.

Gail O’Brien, Senior Crown Prosecutor for the North West said: “Luke Benson and Adam Acton carried out a brutal and sustained attack on Daniel Smith, a fellow homeless man, after he had accidentally urinated on bedding within the camp. They then attempted to dispose of his body by setting fire to him.

“Daniel Smith stood no chance of defending himself against the level of violence inflicted upon him that night. Their attack was utterly disproportionate to the disagreement they had had with him. They also attempted to cover their tracks by taking Daniel’s belongings from him, destroyed them and hiding them from the police.

Police were shocked by the casual way camp dwellers recounted the violence as matter of fact or even funny due their constant exposure to fights and random violence fuelled by SPICE and cheap alcohol.

Miss O’Brien added:”This was a challenging case for the police to piece together during their investigation and for the prosecution to present before the court as there were many comings and goings in the campsite during the course of the evening.

The two men plus two others also attempted to pervert the course of justice by changing his clothes, damaging his belongings and hiding them from the police and finally conspiring to dispose of his body by setting fire to him.

“Both men have shown no remorse throughout the case and continued to deny all responsibility for the murder and what followed afterwards, but today they must face up to the consequences of their actions.”