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Ballymena man admits to killing owner of guesthouse


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A 52-year-old man yesterday admitted killing the owner of a Ballymena guesthouse where he had been staying.

Michael Lenaghan, from Galgorm Road in Ballymena, appeared at Belfast Crown Court via a videolink with Maghaberry.

After confirming he could see and hear proceedings, Lenaghan was then charged with murdering Inayat Shah.

He denied murdering the bed and breakfast owner but pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility.

Mr Shah (67) ran the Traveller's Rest, which was situated on Galgorm Road, and sustained fatal stab wounds on March 21 last year.

The accused was also charged with wounding a second man on the same date with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm.

Lenaghan denied this charge, but entered a guilty plea to the lesser charge of wounding.

When an offence of threatening to kill a third man on March 21, 2020 was put to him, he replied "not guilty".

Mr Justice O'Hara revealed the facts of the case were not in dispute and added "the question is about this defendant's state of mind."

Defence barrister Kelly Doherty confirmed this, and said her client was due to see a doctor for a medical assessment in prison next week.

Mr Justice O'Hara said he would review the case at the end of May.

Lenaghan was remanded back into custody.

Belfast Telegraph

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