Loyalist murder charge dropped

The case was heard at Belfast Magistrate's Court

A murder charge against a leading loyalist has been dropped.

Ihab Shoukri, 30, from Alliance Road, Belfast, was accused of murdering a man at the height of a feud within rival factions of the Ulster Defence Association last year.

Alan McCullough's body was found in a shallow grave in Mallusk in June, 2003.

The 21-year-old was a former member of the UDA.

Belfast Magistrate's Court heard on Thursday that scientific tests on fibres, fingerprints and DNA samples had proved negative.

Mr Shoukri still faces a charge of membership of the Ulster Freedom Fighters.

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