Four men have denied killing a father-of-two during an armed raid late last year.

Shammi Atwal, 45, of Chigwell was killed trying to protect his wife and business from a gang of thieves.

The businessman died after being hit by a lorry while pursuing a group of 10 men as they run off from his shop, Glen & Co cash and carry in River Road, Barking, on October 14.

The group were armed with metal bars and at least one sledgehammer as they entered the drinks wholesale store.

It is understood Mr Atwal was pushed uder the lorry; he was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver stopped at the scene and was not arrested.

The four men are Vidmantas Gonskoves, 26, of Grange Road, Plaistow; Farhan Sheikh, 38, of Thornhill Gardens, Barking; Reiniks Kivers, 28, of no fixed address; and Aurimas Diliunas, 27, of no fixed address

The four all pleaded not guilty to manslaughter and conspiracy to rob at the Old Bailey yesterday.

They will go on trial at the Old Bailey on April 7.