Woman denies murdering five in fire
A WOMAN has denied murdering five members of a family who died when a fire engulfed their home.
Melanie Jane Smith, 42, pleaded not guilty to five counts of murder when she appeared by video-link before Caernarfon Crown Court in Wales today.
Lee-Anna Shiers, 20, and her four-year-old nephew Bailey and two-year-old niece Skye died in the blaze at their home in north Wales on October 19 last year.
Firefighters managed to rescue Ms Shiers' 15-month-old son Charlie and his father Liam Timbrell, 23, from their first-floor flat, but they both died later in hospital.
Smith, who lived in the flat below the victims in Maes y Groes, Prestatyn, also denied one count of making a threat to destroy or damage property.
The defendant was remanded in custody by Judge Merfyn Hughes QC until a pre-trial hearing on March 18.
Her trial will begin in April on a date to be fixed.