Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Celtic players 'disappointed' at bullets in post

Celtic players Paddy McCourt and Niall McGinn are "shocked and disappointed" at having bullets sent to them, their agent said yesterday.

Police launched an investigation after a package containing bullets and addressed to McCourt at Celtic Park was discovered yesterday by Royal Mail workers in the east end of Glasgow.

It comes days after bullets sent to fellow player McGinn (23) and Parkhead boss Neil Lennon were detected by postal workers in Mallusk, Co Antrim. Lennon, McCourt and McGinn all hail from Northern Ireland.

All three packages were posted in Northern Ireland.

Gerry Carlile, the players' representative, said: "I have spoken to both Paddy and Niall and while both are shocked and disappointed, they are determined this won't derail their efforts on the park.

"Both are encouraged by the support and sympathy they have received from both sides of the divide in recent days.

"However, I hope the PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland) and Strathclyde Police are investigating thoroughly and that those responsible are caught and brought to justice swiftly."

The package sent to McCourt (27) was discovered by staff at a Royal Mail sorting office in the east end of Glasgow yesterday.

Police were immediately alerted and launched an investigation.

A Strathclyde Police spokeswoman said: "We can confirm that we are currently investigating a suspicious package discovered in Glasgow on Tuesday, January 11. Inquiries are ongoing."

A Royal Mail spokeswoman said: "Royal Mail can confirm that a suspect package was found in one of our Glasgow offices."

Celtic said it was a police matter and they did not want to comment.

The three Celtic targets are Catholic and have represented Northern Ireland at international level, but while McCourt and McGinn are favourites of the Windsor Park football ground crowd, Lennon retired from international football in 2002 after receiving death threats.

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