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Trial of Margaret Henderson-McCarroll accused of murdering OAP begins tomorrow

By Michael Donnelly

A jury has been sworn in to hear the case of a Belfast woman accused of the murder of a Co Antrim pensioner.

Margaret Henderson-McCarroll is charged with the murder of 67-year-old Greenisland man Eddie Girvan on January 18 last year.

She denies the charge.

The 31-year-old had been living in the Ormeau Centre, Verner Street, in the Markets area of Belfast, at the time of the murder.

However, her address on court papers is given as Hydebank Young Offenders' Centre.

Trial judge Mr Justice Treacy yesterday told the jury of seven women and five men that the defendant in the dock was alleged to have murdered a man by the name of Thomas James Edwin Girvan, also known as 'Eddie', who lived in Station Road, Greenisland.

Mr Girvan, the judge added, had been a retired plumber who had a hobby of collecting antiques.

Prosecution QC Charles MacCreanor, along with defence QC John McCrudden, estimated that the trial should last, "in the worst case scenario" for up to three weeks.

However, while it was also indicated that the actual evidence would take up to 15 days to complete, that could be spread over a period of four weeks.

Mr Justice Treacy, who ascertained that none of the jury members came from the Greenisland area, or knew any of the potential witnesses to give evidence before them, adjourned the case until Wednesday "for the trial proper to start".

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