Tuesday 16 January 2018

Turkish barman in court over boxer death

Eamon Magee Jnr
Eamon Magee Jnr

Lesley Anne McKeown

A Turkish barman has been remanded in custody charged with murdering the son of a former boxing champion.

Orhan Koca appeared at Craigavon Magistrates' Court yesterday and spoke to confirm his name and that he understood the murder charge against him.

Professional boxer Eamonn Magee Jnr (22) was stabbed to death as he went to check on a pizza delivery in the early hours of Saturday morning.

His father Eamonn Magee Snr, a former WBU welterweight title holder, was in court supported by a large crowd of friends.

Koca (32) is a father of three with no fixed abode, who has lived in Northern Ireland for two-and-a-half years.

Defence solicitor Eamon O'Connor said Koca had consistently denied the murder charge from the moment of his arrest and throughout 19 police interviews.

Mr O'Connor said: "There is a full acknowledgement that this was a truly horrific crime. To have a child taken away in such brutal circumstances is the worst thing that can happen to a parent."

The court was told that Koca would be applying for bail in four weeks' time.

However, a prosecutor said bail would be opposed in all circumstances.

Ahead of opening the case, District Judge Des Perry warned he would clear the room if the hearing was disturbed.

Remanding Koca into custody, the judge appealed for the forensics lab to deal with the high-profile case expeditiously.

Irish Independent

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