Boy, 13, is found murdered on golf course

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The Independent Online
The Royal Ulster Constabulary has launched a murder inquiry after the body of a 13-year-old boy was found yesterday on a golf course on the shores of Lough Neagh in Northern Ireland.

The body of Darren Fawns from Antrim was discovered by a Belgian tourist in woodland close to the 11th tee at the Massereene course. It is understood he had head injuries and was naked.

Darren had been reported missing by his parents and was last seen in the centre of Antrim last Friday night. Detectives believe his body had been lying on the golf course for up to three days.

Det Supt Sam Kincaid, leading the inquiry, last night issued an appeal to anyone who might know of the teenager's movements from 7.30pm onwards on Friday. A post-mortem examination was carried out last night and the teenager's parents were informed. Details of the preliminary results were not released.

The golf course is close to a camping and caravan park and police have interviewed tourists and holidaymakers staying there as part of their investigation. Anyone with any information which may relate to the murder are asked to contact the incident room at Antrim on 01232 650222.

Meanwhile, the inquest into the two boys murdered while out on a fishing trip in the Wirral last week heard that one boy was strangled and the other was stabbed to death.

A post-mortem examination of 13-year-old Paul Barker found that he had been strangled with a ligature, and only after he died were multiple stab wounds inflicted on his chest, Wirral coroner's court was told.

His friend Robert Gee, 12, died from stab wounds to the chest, but there were also marks showing asphyxiation on his body.

The details were given during evidence of identification at the hearing at Wallasey Town Hall, which was told that the boys' bodies were removed from scrubland at Eastham, Merseyside, on Sunday. Robert's father, Leonard, identified his son's body and Paul's body was identified by his uncle Ray Williams. The inquest was adjourned until after the conclusion of criminal proceedings.

The Wirral coroner, Christopher Johnson, said: "I would like to express my deepest sypathies to both families on the loss of Robert and Paul in the evil circumstances which occurred."

No members of the victims' families attended the 14-minute hearing.