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Ferne McCann's Boyfriend, Arthur Collins, Charged With GBH Over Hackney Acid Attack

Collins, 25, apprehended by armed police in Rushden, Northants, on Saturday.

23/04/2017 09:19 | Updated 23 April 2017

The boyfriend of reality TV star Ferne McCann has been charged with 14 counts of wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm following an acid attack at a Hackney nightclub, Scotland Yard said.

Arthur Collins is also charged with throwing corrosive fluid on a person to cause GBH.

Collins has been hunted by police since April 17 when a corrosive liquid was sprayed during a dispute at Mangle, east London, that left two revellers partially blinded and others disfigured.

The 25-year-old was arrested at an address in Rushden, Northants on Saturday night by officers from the Met’s Specialist Crime & Operations and Hackney Borough, with the assistance of armed officers and was to be taken into custody. 

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Arthur Collins, the boyfriend of reality TV star Ferne McCann, has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder over a nightclub acid attack

McCann, best known for her appearances on The Only Way Is Essex, had urged Collins, who is from Hertfordshire, to turn himself in and had appeared to distance herself from him as the police hunt intensified. 

Police on Saturday also arrested 21-year-old Andre Phoenix over the incident.

He has been charged with seven counts of grievous bodily harm, the Met said in a statement.

Around 20 clubbers suffered burns after being doused with the substance on Easter Monday, including a 22-year-old woman and a 24-year-old man who were both blinded in one eye.

Detective Inspector Lee McCullough of Hackney CID said: “This investigation continues to move at great pace and the net is closing in on those we believe to be responsible.

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McCann, pictured above at the 2017 TRIC Awards, had urged Collins to turn himself in

“My team continues to act on a number of leads to bring in those wanted for questioning in relation to this awful incident.”

McCullough added: “We have 20 people suffering from the effects of an acidic substance being sprayed in a confined space in a busy nightclub. All have burn-related injuries. This incident has caused suffering to a large group of people and left many others needing long term treatment.

“The noxious substance used has not yet been confirmed but samples retrieved from the scene have been sent for analysis. If you were there and saw anyone involved inside or leaving the nightclub, please get in touch.”

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Around 20 clubbers suffered burns after being doused with the substance on Easter Monday

The man blinded in one eye and another victim, a 29-year-old man, were transferred to a specialist burns hospital in Essex, and have since been discharged, police said.

Detectives believe trouble brewed between two groups at the packed club and the acidic substance was flung directly over the pair.

A 24-year-old old man arrested in north London over the attack on Friday has since been released, police said.

Phoenix will appear at Thames Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

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