Louis de Zoysa, 23, appears in court from hospital bed charged with shooting cop, 54, dead in custody suite

A MAN has today appeared in court from his hospital bed charged with murdering a cop shot dead inside a custody suite nine months ago.

Sergeant Matt Ratana, 54, died after being blasted four times during a search at Croydon Custody Centre on September 25 last year.

A man has been charged with the murder of PC Matt RatanaCredit: PA

Louis de Zoysa was charged with murder, possession of a firearm and possession of ammunition

Louis de Zoysa was charged with murder, possession of a firearm and possession of ammunition

The officer – who had served with the Met since 1991 – was the first ever officer to be killed inside a British police station.

Louis de Zoysa was left fighting for life in hospital with brain damage after shooting himself.

The 23-year-old was unable to be quizzed by officers but a change in his condition means he has now been charged.

De Zoysa today appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court from his hospital bed via videolink.

He is charged with murder, possession of a firearm and possession of ammunition.

The defendant held up a whiteboard to with his name and date of birth written on it to identify himself during the brief hearing.

He was remanded in custody to next appear at the Old Bailey on Friday.

MURDER CHARGE

Scotland Yard said they have been in close liaison with de Zoysa’s medical team and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

The PACE clock – the time period within which police can legally detain a suspect – was paused while he was in hospital but he was under police guard.

Sgt Ratana had tragically been planning to propose to his partner of six years Su Bushby when he was gunned down.

She previously paid tribute to the hero cop, saying: “There aren’t really any words for how I am feeling right now about the loss of Matt; about losing someone I loved and was so close to in such a tragic manner.

“I know Matt touched many, many people’s lives with his friendliness, patience, kindness, enthusiasm and caring ways.

“I had the pleasure of sharing five years of my life with this lovely man – my gentle giant, with his infectious smile and big heart. I think of him with tenderness and love.

“Matt was my partner, friend, confidant, support and soul mate.

“He will be greatly missed but never forgotten. Matt will always be in my head and in my heart.”

Sgt Ratana had moved to work in custody because it was safer before the tragedy.

The officer had served with the Met Police since 1991 and worked in Croydon from 2015.

Pals said Sgt Ratana, dad to a grown-up son, 26, dreamed of travelling Europe on his motorbike then coaching at his rugby club in Sussex.

Sgt Ratana had served with the Met Police since 1991 and worked in Croydon from 2015

Sgt Ratana had served with the Met Police since 1991 and worked in Croydon from 2015

He was planning to propose to his partner of six years Su Bushby when he was killed

He was planning to propose to his partner of six years Su Bushby when he was killedCredit: Tim Stewart

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