Two charged over murder of Carrickfergus man Simon Tang

image captionFather of two Simon Tang died after being beaten and robbed in June 1996

Two men have been remanded in custody charged with murdering Carrickfergus businessman Simon Tang in June 1996.

Appearing at Belfast Magistrates Court on Saturday were Paul Allen, 38, from Drumhoy Drive and George Robinson, 36, from The Hollies, both Carrickfergus.

Mr Tang, 28, who was married with two sons, was beaten and robbed as he left his takeaway business in the town.

The attackers stole his watch and less than £400 in cash. Mr Tang was taken to hospital but died from his injuries.

Three other people - two men and a woman - have previously been charged with perverting the course of justice over the killing.

The case featured on the BBC's Crimewatch programme in March.

In Court on Saturday, a detective sergeant, who said he that he had been involved in the investigation since the murder happened, agreed the main evidence against Mr Allen came from two witnesses known as A and B.

He said Witness A had come forward at the time and had made several statements, but that Witness B, through fear, had only come forward to make a statement in the last year.

Mr Allen's defence solicitor put to the detective that his client had given a "full account" both during 20 interviews when initially arrested in 1996 and again since his arrest last Tuesday.

The solicitor also put to the detective that the accounts of both witnesses A and B were "replete with mistakes, inconsistencies, vagaries and ultimately confusion".

However, the officer refuted the suggestion, telling the court that in his view, while there were discrepancies: "I believe that we have good evidence to connect your client to the murder of Mr Tang."

In refusing the bail application and remanding the pair into custody to appear again on Wednesday, District Judge Amanda Henderson said she would view any potential bail applications if there were suitable addresses outside Carrickfergus.

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