Raoul Moat's 'close friend' Paul Gascoigne wants to join negotiations
The Raoul Moat armed stand-off took a bizarre turn when former England footballer Paul Gascoigne arrived in Rothbury claiming to be a friend of the gunman.
Northumbria Police finally found Moat on the riverbank at Rothbury on Friday evening, after a seven-day manhunt which followed the shooting of his former girlfriend, her new boyfriend and a traffic policeman.
Armed officers are now attempting to negotiate with Moat, who is reported to be holding a sawn off shotgun to his head.
They were stunned when Gascoigne turned up at their cordon and asked to talk to his friend 'Moatie', as he had brought him some food, lager and warm clothing.
The 1990 World Cup hero described Moat as "a good lad" and suggested there was no chance of the man wanted in connection with three shootings trying to harm him, as they are mates.
Officers did not allow the former footballer, who is better known as Gazza, access to the scene of the stand-off and have dismissed the idea that he is a close friend of Moat.
During an interview with Metro Radio, a barely coherent Gascoigne claimed: "He is willing to give in now. I just want to give him some therapy and say 'come on Moatie, it's Gazza'."
It is believed one of Moat's close friends, Tony Laidler, has been brought in by police to help with negotiations.
( Collapse )