Northern Ireland news

Man (41) denies charge of murdering Nathan Gibson

Nathan Gibson (25)

A 41-year-old has denied a charge of murdering Craigavon man Nathan Gibson.

John Paul Whitla, of no fixed abode, appeared at Belfast Crown Court today via a videolink with Maghaberry.

Mr Gibson (25) was discovered with fatal wounds on a towpath close to Lake Road in Craigavon last January.

After confirming he could see and hear the court, Whitla said he was pleading 'not guilty' to a charge of murdering Mr Gibson on January 16 2020.

He also denied five other offences on the same date, including assaulting a female, and falsely imprisoning and threatening to kill the same woman.

Mr Justice O'Hara enquired about reports needed ahead of the trial and was told by defence barrister Richard Green that "psychiatric and psychological reports will be required, together with a normal medical report, on his physical condition on the night in question."

The judge expressed the hope that the trial could take place before the summer. The case will be reviewed on March 12.

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Northern Ireland news