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Former X Factor contestant up in court over Facebook posts which accused ex-friend of stalking her

By Deborah McAleese

Published 09/04/2016

Jolene Burns on stage
Jolene Burns on stage

A former X Factor contestant has appeared in court accused of calling a friend "the creepiest person on this planet" on Facebook.

Model and singer Jolene Burns was this week charged in connection with a smear campaign against a former pal.

The Belfast woman, who made it through to the bootcamp stage of the talent show in 2011 with eventual winners Little Mix, is alleged to have posted a photograph of the man and branded him a "creep", a "pervert" and a "stalker".

One of the messages she is alleged to have posted read: "Warning! This guy is the creepiest person on this planet. Be aware people as he has been stalking me, taking pictures of my child and posting threw (sic) my letter box ... perverted or what."

In the post the man was accused of following Ms Burns home "all the time" and watching "everything me and my child do". It also accused him of standing outside her house "looking threw (sic) my windows in the dark".

The post continued: "Nothing more than a perverted creep. If anyone knows or sees this guy stay away. He is nothing but a perverted b******".

It also claimed that Ms Burns had been forced to change home and jobs because of the man.

"Now he is stalking the life out of me and my little daughter," it concluded.

Ms Burns appeared before Belfast Magistrates Court this week on two charges of improper use of a public communications network.

The 28-year-old struck up a friendship with the man last July after meeting in a Belfast cafe where she was working.

It is understood the pair fell out a few months later. The man reported her to police when he became aware of the messages posted online. Ms Burns wowed X Factor judges in the auditions for the show in 2011 and was voted through to the bootcamp stage. She was one of the Northern Ireland hopefuls that year, along with Omagh's Janet Devlin.

While Janet made it through to the live shows, Ms Burns failed to complete bootcamp.

Little Mix went on to win the talent show.

Last year Ms Burns appeared on the Irish version of The Voice and was coached by musician Niall Breslin, known as Bressie.

She was eliminated in the battles stage of the contest.

Since then, she has been performing at a number of Belfast nightspots. The case against her has been adjourned until later this month.

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