A builder has pleaded not guilty to using a digger to cause millions of pounds worth of damage to a row of newly built retirement homes
Daniel Neagu, 30, was charged with criminal damage after five houses belonging to McCarthy & Stone Retirement Living to the value of around £4 million were wrecked in Buntingford, Hertfordshire, on 11 August.
The builder pleaded not guilty to the charge during a preliminary hearing at St Albans Crown Court on Monday.
It is alleged he acted without lawful excuse and was reckless as to whether the properties were destroyed or damaged.
A McCarthy & Stone spokeswoman has said that Neagu was not employed directly by them and was instead working for subcontractor Fenton.
Sitting on an estate still under construction, the homes in Ermine Street had external walls torn out, leaving debris littering their gardens. A turquoise digger stood beside the devastation.
A trial for Neagu, a Romanian national living in Athelstone Road, Harrow, north-west London, was set for St Albans Crown Court on February 4 2019.
He was remanded in custody.