Belfast Telegraph

Dunmurry man pleads guilty to affray in Christopher Meli murder

Christopher Meli
Christopher Meli

By Ashleigh McDonald

A Dunmurry man has pleaded guilty to an offence linked to the December 2015 murder of Christopher Meli.

Daniel McManus appeared at Belfast Crown Court on Friday, where he was re-arraigned on a charge of affray.

When the single charge was put to him by a clerk of the court, he replied "guilty."

The 20-year-old was one of eight young people charged with offences linked to the murder of father-of-one Mr Meli (20), who was beaten to death on the evening of December 12, 2015 in west Belfast.

Charges levelled at the accused - which have all been denied - range from murder and grievous bodily to attempted GBH and affray.

From Springbank Drive in Dunmurry, McManus was charged with affray and, whilst he initially denied the charge, he entered a guilty plea after being re-arraigned on Friday.

Mr Justice Colton said he would sentence McManus at the conclusion of the trial of his seven co-accused, with the hearing scheduled to start next month.

Three of the defendants have been charged with murder and other violent offences, while four co-accused are standing trial for offences linked to alleged violent incidents both before and after the attack in Twinbrook which claimed Mr Meli's life.

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