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Duo found guilty of forcing Francis McPeake from home

By John Cassidy

Published 16/05/2015

Musician Francis McPeake
Musician Francis McPeake

Two women from the Markets district of south Belfast were yesterday warned they may face jail after they were found guilty of intimidating traditional musician Francis McPeake out of his home.

At Belfast Crown Court, judge Gordon Kerr QC released Eileen Murdock (48), of Eliza Street Close, and civil servant Danielle Whyte (29), of Stewart Street, on bail for the preparation of pre-sentence reports. But he warned them: "This court will be considering a period of imprisonment.''

They will be sentenced on June 19 along with Colleen McNally (37), Sarah Bruce (44) and her 50-year-old partner Paul Quinn, who are all from Stewart Street and who all admitted various charges arising from the case.

During the three-day trial, the court heard a crowd gathered outside Mr McPeake's home following a newspaper report that he was facing sex abuse charges. A jury subsequently acquitted him of all charges late last year.

Mr McPeake's son told the jury this week that the crowd who had gathered outside his parents' home should be "ashamed of themselves".

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