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Jealous husband is jailed for boxer Eamonn Magee murder

By Cate McCurry

A jealous husband who stabbed his estranged wife's new boyfriend to death outside his former family home has been jailed for 14 years.

Eamonn Magee Jnr, the 22-year-old son of boxing champion Eamonn Snr, was attacked by Orhan Koca outside the property in Twinbrook.

Describing Eamonn (junior) as a "promising young boxer and student", Mr Justice Treacy at Belfast Crown Court said Koca was motivated by jealousy.

Koca (34) had previously denied any involvement in the killing, however, last month he pleaded guilty to murdering the talented student.

Around 30 family members and friends, most of whom were wearing Justice for Eamonn T-shirts, gathered in the public gallery for the sentencing.

The court heard that Koca told a probation officer last month that he went to his estranged wife's house at Summerhill Drive in the early hours of May 30 2015, and claimed he saw lights on upstairs and thought there was an intruder in the property.

Koca claimed that when he saw a man (Eamonn) leave the house, he panicked and stabbed him in the leg and then lost control and could not remember after that.

The defendant fled the scene and returned to Beckett's Bar, where he had been working.

Describing Koca's version of events as a "wholly implausible and self-serving", the judge branded him a liar.

"I am satisfied it was pre-meditated and a planned murder which was both brutal and sustained and where the intention was to take life," he told the court.

The judge said that Koca still had feelings for his estranged wife, Courtney Ward, and was "jealous and aggressive" towards any male who was interested in her.

Eamonn was found in a pool of blood and bleeding heavily from the stab wounds outside Courtney's home.

As the sentence was handed down, a few family members wiped away tears, while one shouted "murdering scum" at Koca.

Speaking outside court, Eamonn Magee Snr said that "no sentence imposed will ever bring back my son".

PSNI Detective Chief Inspector John McVea said: "I hope that the sentence handed out will bring some degree of justice to the family."

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