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Willie Frazer attack accused vows to defend his name

CCTV footage of the alleged incident outside Willie Frazer's home in Markethill, Co Armagh
Brendan Hughes

A CO TYRONE man is to "strenuously" defend allegations against him after being held over a reported assault on loyalist campaigner Willie Frazer.

Frank McGirr from outside Coalisland was arrested in the early hours of yesterday on suspicion of common assault and threats to kill.

The 60-year-old was later released on bail pending further enquiries.

Mr Frazer received medical treatment after the alleged incident at his home in the Tandragee Road area of Markethill, Co Armagh, at about 7pm on Sunday.

The 54-year-old flag protester said he was left badly bruised and may have suffered cracked ribs.

He claimed the incident happened when a man arrived at his door and gave him a sympathy card with his name on it.

Speaking last night on behalf of Mr McGirr, a solicitor said the businessman was considering civil action over subsequent claims made online by Mr Frazer.

Conal McGarrity, of Dungannon-based firm PA Duffy, said: "At this stage Frank has given a full account of what happened and he intends to defend all allegations made against him strenuously.

"Comments made by Mr Frazer in the press have wholly misrepresented what actually happened during the incident and totally misrepresent his family background.

"We are reviewing our options in terms of civil action against Mr Frazer."

Last year Mr McGirr, a regular caller to radio phone-in shows, 'quit' Sinn Féin live on the Nolan Show after MLA Gerry Kelly backed the use of informers.

But a spokesman for Sinn Féin denied that Mr McGirr, of Shanliss Road, Stewartstown, had been a party member when he publicly 'resigned' on air.

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