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Witness to McDaid murder granted bail

A witness to the sectarian killing of Catholic community worker Kevin McDaid has been granted bail as he appeals being jailed for disorderly behaviour.

But a High Court judge who agreed to release Peter Neill banned him from associating publicly with more than two people at any time.

Neill (41), of Hazelbank Road, Coleraine, Co Londonderry, was sentenced to four months imprisonment earlier this week.

He was found guilty of causing disorder at Hillcrest Road in the town on Boxing Day 2008.

Neill is one of the main prosecution witnesses in the case against those accused of murdering Mr McDaid in May 2009.

The 49-year-old father of four was beaten to death when mob violence erupted in the Heights area of Coleraine, allegedly over the erection of Irish tricolour flags.

Following Neill's conviction the district judge who jailed him refused a bail application pending his planned appeal.

But Lord Justice Coghlin ruled that he could be allowed to live at his home address under strict conditions.

The judge imposed a night-time curfew and a ban on alcohol.

He also directed: “He is not to associate publicly with more than two other people on any occasion.”

Neill was further prohibited from travelling in a private car and ordered to report to police five times a week.

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