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Tearful doctor shakes in dock as he's accused of mother's murder

By Angela Rainey

A doctor accused of murdering his mother in south Belfast has been remanded in custody.

Declan Kevin O'Neill (27) appeared in the dock of Laganside Magistrates Court yesterday.

He is accused of killing former nurse Anne O'Neill (51) in her parents' back garden on Ardmore Avenue, Finaghy, on October 21.

A 23-year-old male was also arrested on suspicion of murder but was later released.

In a hearing lasting less than two minutes, Detective Inspector Joanne Harris said that she could connect the accused to the crime.

Dressed in prison-issue grey sweatshirt and bottoms, Mr O'Neill, a doctor at Musgrave Park Hospital in Belfast, was flanked by four security officers in the dock.

Pale in complexion and his lips quivering, he was tearful and was shaking uncontrollably as the charge was read in front of Presiding District Judge Fiona Bagnall.

Asked if he understood the allegation against him, he nodded and replied: "Yes."

No further details were disclosed during the brief hearing.

A defence lawyer confirmed he was not seeking bail or putting any questions to the detective at this stage.

O'Neill, of Malone Avenue, was remanded in custody until the next hearing in November 22 when he will appear via video-link.

Legal Aid has been applied for, the court heard.

Belfast Telegraph

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