Bertie Acheson death: Couple deny murder of Coleraine pensioner

Sheila & Bertie Acheson Image copyright Other
Image caption Bertie Acheson, pictured with his wife, Sheila, died after he had a heart attack during a break-in

A former husband and wife have both pleaded not guilty to the murder of a pensioner in County Londonderry.

Bertie Acheson, 72, died after he had a heart attack during a break-in at his house in Coleraine on 30 April, 2012.

The accused are Jennifer Toland, from County Antrim, and her ex-husband, Paul James Manolito Toland, from Molesworth Street in Cookstown, County Tyone.

After entering their not guilty pleas at Belfast Crown Court, their murder trial date was set for 2 June.

During the hearing, both accused also denied a second charge of stealing a purse belonging to the pensioner's wife, Sheila Acheson, on the same night.

The purse contained £338 in cash.

The trial is expected to last up to four weeks, but the judge said that, as yet, no court venue had been finalised.

A number of expert witnesses will be called by the defence, including a DNA expert from the United States and also experts in vehicle recognition

The accused were released on continuing bail and were excused from attending a planned review hearing on 2 May.

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