ARRESTED MEN RELEASED

Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena.  Picture by Justin Kernoghan.  inbm02-15s
Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena. Picture by Justin Kernoghan. inbm02-15s

As the funeral of the man murdered in Ballymoney last week took place, the PSNI have confirmed that all three men arrested in connection with the incident have been released without charge.

Father-of-five Brian McIlhagga was brutally beaten before being shot in the leg in an attack at Riverview Park in the town on Monday, January 5th. He died from his injuries.

Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena.  Picture by Justin Kernoghan.  inbm02-15s

Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena. Picture by Justin Kernoghan. inbm02-15s

Police said the 42-year-old had suffered a “vicious, brutal and sustained attack”. The woman who lived in the house was also beaten during the incident.

Mr McIlhagga’s funeral took place on Sunday from his family home in Ballymena.

Friends and family of Mr McIlhagga gathered at the family home at Cromkill Road for the service after which mourners joined the cortege, which made its way to Ballymena Cemetery for interment.

Three men - aged 31, 22 and 46 - arrested in connection with the murder have all been released unconditionally, the PSNI confirmed yesterday (Monday).
PSNI Chief Inspector Michael Harvey said: “I have no information to rule in or rule out any paramilitaries or any other motives for this attack.”

Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena.  Picture by Justin Kernoghan.  inbm02-15s

Brian's father Ronnie (glasses) helping to carry the coffin of his murdered son Brian McIlhagga from the family house at his funeral in Ballymena. Picture by Justin Kernoghan. inbm02-15s

He said the victim had a “minor criminal record but he is certainly not a major criminal”.