Lorry driver in court over deaths of eight people on M1

David Wagstaff (53) from Stoke-on-Trent is charged with eight counts of causing death by dangerous driving. Credit: ITV News Anglia

A lorry driver accused of causing the deaths of eight people in a crash on the M1 in Buckinghamshire has appeared in court.

David Wagstaff is charged with eight counts of causing death by dangerousdriving and four counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving inconnection with the accident over the August bank holiday weekend.

  • Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Matthew Hudson

The 53-year-old, from Stoke-on-Trent, appeared at Milton KeynesMagistrates' Court on Monday morning.

Dressed in a dark suit, Wagstaff, who was driving a Mercedes lorry at the time of the incident, did not indicate how he would plead to the charges.

The crash involving two lorries and a minibus happened on the M1 at Newport Pagnell near Milton Keynes over the August Bank Holiday weekend. Credit: ITV News Anglia

David Wagstaff was granted bail on the condition that he is not to leave the UK without prior approval of the Crown Court.

The case was sent to Aylesbury Crown Court, where Wagstaff will appear on 26 September.

At the end of the short hearing, chairman of the bench Sarah Clarke said: "As a mark of respect for the families and bereaved in this matter, the bench will now retire."

Polish trucker Ryszard Masierak, of Evesham, Worcestershire, has alreadyappeared at High Wycombe Magistrates' Court in connection with the crash.

The 31-year-old faces eight counts of causing death by dangerous driving, four counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and eight counts of causing death by careless driving while over the prescribed alcohol limit.

He allegedly came to a halt in the southbound slow lane of the M1 inBuckinghamshire before the accident early on 26 August.

The wreckage of the minibus in which eight people died on 26 August 2017. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Minibus driver Cyriac Joseph, who was taking a party of Indian tourists toLondon, is believed to have collided with a second lorry as he attempted toavoid Masierak's vehicle.

He died along with five other men and two women, while four other passengers were taken to hospital.