Neighbour denies wasting police time in Tia Sharp case

11:11 28 February 2013

Tia Sharp. Picture: Metropolitan Police

Tia Sharp. Picture: Metropolitan Police

PA Wire/Press Association Images

A neighbour of the grandmother of murdered Croydon schoolgirl Tia Sharp has appeared in court accused of wasting police time.

Paul Meehan, 40, of Croydon, south London, pleaded not guilty today at Croydon Magistrates’ Court to the offence.

He is charged with causing wasteful employment of the police by making a false report that he had information linked to an inquiry on August 6 last year.

Meehan allegedly made a statement to police that he had seen 12-year-old Tia on the day she went missing.

He was released on bail and will next appear at the same court on May 3 for a one-day trial.

Meehan is the neighbour of Tia’s grandmother, Christine Sharp, whose boyfriend, Stuart Hazell, is due to stand trial for the 12-year-old’s murder later this year.

Tia’s body was found in the loft of her grandmother’s house in New Addington in August last year, more than a week after she went missing.

Hazell, 37, from New Addington, is charged with murdering the schoolgirl between August 2 and 11. He is due to face trial in May.

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