A 27-year-old nurse has been charged in connection with the deaths of five patients at a Stockport hospital at the centre of a tampering probe.

Rebecca Leighton appeared at Manchester Magistrates Court on three counts of criminal damage with intent to endanger life and three counts of criminal damage being reckless as to whether life was being endangered.

She also faced a charge of stealing medicine from Stepping Hill Hospital.

Ms Leighton was remanded in custody until 1 August when she will next appear at Manchester Crown Court.

She has been in police custody since Wednesday morning where she has faced questions by detectives probing the contamination of saline at the hospital.

The alarm was raised at the hospital last week when a higher than normal number of patients were reported to have 'unexplained' low blood sugar levels.

Police found a batch of saline solution contaminated with insulin in a storeroom close to wards A1 and A3.