Northern Ireland

Man guilty of Geoff Kerr murder gets 22 years in jail

Financial advisor and gun enthusiast Geoff Kerr was murdered in his home
Image caption Financial advisor and gun enthusiast Geoff Kerr was murdered in his home

A 35-year-old Antrim man found guilty of the April 2009 murder of Geoff Kerr has been sentenced to at least 22 years in jail.

Mr Kerr, who was 60, was shot dead at his home in Templepatrick during an attempted robbery.

Darren Kernohan, 35, of Moss Drive, was given a life sentence last month.

He had admitted firing the fatal shot, but had claimed he had done so accidentally during a struggle with the victim.

His accomplice Martin Fleming, 51, from Churchill Road in Larne was told he will serve at least 16 years of his life term in jail before even being considered for release on licence.

The judge told Fleming he was giving him a discount because he was a secondary party to the killing and because he had pleaded guilty.

Mother and daughter Margaret Deery, 63, and Siobhan Clyde, 34, both from Willowtree Park in Newtownabbey, who admitted charges of perverting the course of justice in relation to the killing, were each handed 12 month jail terms which were suspended for two years.

Mr Justice Hart handed the same term to Laurence Desmond Kincaid, 60, from the Upper Hightown Road in Newtownabbey, who pleaded guilty to withholding information about the murder.

The judge said he was satisfied that contrary to his assertions during the trial, Kernohan had "shown no remorse whatever throughout these events".

"He refused to answer questions during interview and it was only when it was clear that the DNA evidence linked him to the scene that he constructed this lying account, as the jury has found it to be, to explain his actions," Mr Justice Hart said.

"I consider that there are no mitigating factors and that in view of the aggravating factors to which I have already referred the appropriate minimum term which he must serve before he can be considered for release is one of 22 years imprisonment."

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