Belfast Telegraph

Eamonn Magee convicted: World boxing champ 'Terminator' beat up woman during late-night drinking session

By Alan Erwin

Former world boxing champion Eamonn Magee was convicted today of beating up a woman in a north Belfast flat.

Belfast Magistrates' Court heard Louise Mullan was dragged to the ground by her hair before the 43-year-old ex-fighter began kicking and hitting her.

The victim, a nursing home worker, said Magee launched the no-warning attack during a late-night drinking session at a friend's apartment in July last year.

Denying the allegations, the defendant instead claimed she had subjected him to a barrage of up to ten punches he likened to the legendary US middleweight Marvin Hagler.

But finding him guilty of assault, District Judge Peter King said: "I don't believe a word I have heard from Mr Magee."

He held that the boxer had given "a completely incredible version of events where he would have me believe he was somehow sparring with the victim".

Magee, known as The Terminator during a professional career which saw him capture the WBU welterweight belt, will be sentenced next month.

He had left a bar with Mrs Mullan and her boyfriend at closing time to go back to a mutual friend's flat in the Oldpark area.

She told the court they had some drinks before Magee targeted her as she sat on a kitchen bench.

"All of a sudden Eamonn just turned into somebody else, grabbed me by the hair and trailed me to the ground," she said.

"He was kicking and hitting me, holding me on the ground. I was trying my best to swing back to get him off me."

According to her account the attack lasted for up to two minutes before Magee got up and ran out the door.

She said she was left with rib and leg injuries, forcing her to take unpaid leave from her job.

Under cross-examination by defence counsel Sean O'Hare, Mrs Mullan denied that she had been "a bit lairy" and struck Magee first, knowing his status as a former world champion boxer.

Mr O'Hare put it to her that she ended up in a "tussle" with his client after he grabbed her arms to stop the blows.

But she replied: "Could you picture me wanting to punch a boxer?"

Magee's professional career spanned 33 fights and also included Commonwealth success.

Since his retirement from the ring seven years ago he has worked as a trainer at the famous Breen's Gym in Belfast.

He claimed some of the others in the flat had been "sniffing lines of cocaine as if they were going out of fashion".

Giving evidence as he contested the charge, he alleged that Mrs Mullan suddenly hit him with a right-left-right combination as he tried to restrain her.

She landed further strikes after backing into and starting to slide down a wall, he claimed.

"That girl can fight, as she went down she was punching me something shocking. She can fight like a man," he told the court.

"My ribs were the worst, she was punching me, she was (Marvin) Hagler."

Magee, with an address at Eskdale Gardens, Belfast, repeatedly denied prosecution assertions that the violence had come from him.

"Why would I do that to a woman?" he asked.

"It's not in my genes. Come on."

He added: "If I had hit that girl I would have knocked her out, and it would only be one punch."

However, Judge King backed Mrs Mullan's version of events.

He said Magee had given "a performance that was so far removed from the truth that I put no weight in it whatsoever".

Convicting him of common assault, the judge added: "The notable element of his evidence was the description of an attack to his ribs as Mrs Mullan was sliding down a wall to be put on the floor."

The boxer will return to court in four weeks time to be sentenced.

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