Northern Ireland news

Two men to go on trial charged with murder of man in Ballymena

33-year-old Donald Fraser-Rennie was found dead in a flat in the Crebilly Road area of Ballymena

TWO men are to stand trial accused of the murder of a man found dead in a Ballymena flat.

Donald Harold Fraser-Rennie died as a result of what police described as a "vicious, sustained and violent" attack.

Appearing at Belfast Crown Court via video-link from prison custody for an arraignment hearing were Steven Arthur Hunter and Samuel Atcheson.

Hunter (30), of Lantara, Ballee, and Atcheson (34), of Crebilly Road in Ballymena, both pleaded not guilty to the murder on a date unknown between September 28 and October 1, 2020.

The body of Mr Fraser-Rennie was found in a flat in Crebilly Road on the Ballykeel estate on Wednesday, September 30.

Senior Crown counsel Ciaran Murphy QC told the hearing that the prosecution case was ready for trial.

Mr Justice O'Hara set the trial date for June 6, 2022. It is expected to last up to three weeks.

Both defendants were remanded into continuing custody.

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