Belfast Telegraph

Attempted murder charge dropped for trio accused of 'beating bouncer with fire extinguisher' in Carrickfergus loyalist feud

By Alan Erwin

Three Carrickfergus men accused of attacking a pub bouncer as part of a suspected loyalist feud are no longer to be charged with his attempted murder, a court heard on Monday.

Lawyers disclosed that Glen McCullough and brothers Brian and Ian Sinclair will instead be prosecuted for allegedly causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

A hearing to determine if they are to stand trial has been listed for November.

The three defendants were arrested after the doorman was allegedly beaten with a fire extinguisher at the Royal Oak Bar in the Co Antrim town.

He suffered a blood clot to the brain, along with multiple skull and facial fractures during assault in March this year, according to police.

Detectives also revealed at a previous hearing how he had to undergo physiotherapy for walking and talking skills.

Ian Sinclair, 37 and from Elizabeth Avenue; 51-year-old Brian Sinclair, from O'Rorkes Row; and 53-year-old Glen McCullough, of Castlemara Drive - all in Carrickfergus - are accused of launching the attack after being refused entry to the pub.

Police have linked the incident to ongoing tensions between rival factions in the town.

High-profile loyalist George Gilmore was murdered days after the alleged pub attack.

The 44-year-old had been in the public gallery when Sinclair and his co-accused made their first appearance at Belfast Magistrates' Court.

At a review hearing in the same courtroom today it was announced that the attempted murder charges will not be pursued.

Ian Sinclair's solicitor, Seamus Leonard, told District Judge Fiona Bagnall that the prosecution will now be for alleged grievous bodily harm with intent.

All three accused are expected back in court in six weeks time to establish if they have a case to answer.

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