A MAN is set to stand trial accused of washing a knife believed to have been used in a town centre stabbing with bleach.

During a short hearing at Ipswich Crown Court, Brett French denied an offence of assisting an offender.

A man was knifed in the back in St John’s Road, Colchester, at 2.20am on Sunday, August 19.

The victim was taken to Colchester General Hospital with serious injuries and gave a description of his attacker to the police.

A short time later, a man knocked on French’s door in Sussex Road, Colchester, saying he had been the victim of an acid attack.

The liquid was subsequently found to have been boiling water.

French, 35, is said to have refused the man entry to his house and called the police and ambulance but later saw the knife on top of a recycling bin. He is then accused of cleaning it.

He was later arrested and charged with assisting an offender.

Police said they were treating the knife attack and the boiling water incident as linked and said there was no wider risk to the public.

At the end of the hearing in front of Judge John Devaux, it was confirmed French would face trial in the fortnight commencing on January 7 next year.

It is expected to last three days.

Three other people were arrested in connection with the two incidents and answered bail at the weekend.

A 48-year-old man from Colchester who was arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm has been re-bailed until October 20.

A 16-year-old boy arrested on suspicion of grievous bodily harm with intent, being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs and breach of a court order has been rebailed until October 29.

A 25-year-old man from Lowestoft who was arrested on suspicion of possession of a knife and grievous bodily harm has also been re-bailed until October 29.