Four found guilty of teenager Harry Baker's murder

  • ITV Wales reporter Ellie Pitt has been following the trial

Three men and a teenager have been found guilty of the murder of 17-year-old Harry Baker. 

The court heard how Harry Baker, from Cardiff, was subjected to a “swift, bloody and merciless attack” before his body was discovered in Barry Docks. 

The teenager had been stabbed to death and his partially-clothed body was found by staff in the early hours on 28 August 2019.

A trial at Newport Crown Court heard Harry and his friend, Louis Johnson, had been in the town selling drugs. The jury was told the two had crossed a group of local drug users who felt “ripped-off” and sought help from other drug dealers to confront them.

Leon Clifford, Ryan Palmer, Leon Symons, Peter McCarthy, a 17-year-old who cannot be named for legal reasons, Lewis Evans and Raymond Thompson were all put on trial for his murder.

The case against six men and the one juvenile was heard over the past nine weeks at Newport Crown Court.

On the evening of 27 August 2019, it was alleged that several of the defendants, described as an "armed and deadly gang" hid in bushes and chased Harry Baker and his friend for almost a mile towards Barry Docks.

Harry's body was found at Barry Intermodal Terminal in August 2019

The court heard that Harry attempted to escape by taking refuge in a locked compound in the docks known as the Intermodal Yard.

The jury heard how several of the defendants followed Harry into the compound with CCTV footage capturing Leon Symons, Ryan Palmer and Peter McCarthy climbing over a gate. Less than two minutes later, the same camera picked up the three men, plus Leon Clifford, climbing back over the fence.

Harry Baker’s body was discovered by dock workers on the morning of 28 August 2019. He had been stripped down to his underwear. Pathologist Dr Deryk James, who carried out the post-mortem on Harry Baker’s body, told the court that the teenager had suffered nine stab or slash wounds.

Each defendant had their own barrister - all of whom told the jury that their client was not guilty of murder, but for different reasons.

Leon Clifford, 23, Leon Symons, 22, Peter McCarthy, 37, and the 17-year-old boy were found guilty of murder.

Ryan Palmer, 34, Lewis Evans, 62, and Raymond Thompson, 48, were cleared of murder but convicted of manslaughter.

Sentencing will take place on 29 March.

Welcoming the verdicts, Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Andy Miles, said, “This was a brutal, senseless and calculated attack, which tragically cost a young boy his life.

“Despite being from a loving family and wanting for nothing, Harry became involved in a dangerous lifestyle; a lifestyle in which more value is placed upon drugs and money than on human life.

“Harry did not deserve the punishment meted out to him that night and his violent death has had a devastating impact on the family and friends he leaves behind.

“Our thoughts remain with them as they now wait to find out the sentences Harry’s killers will receive, and begin to contemplate rebuilding their lives without him.”