BREAKING NEWS: Jack Merrilees ‘not guilty’ of murder

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The jury had previously been told Mr Merrilees stabbed Mr Cornet three times “with severe force”, one of which had piereced his heart.

It happened following a furious row between the pair after a booze-fuelled day out with Mrs Merrilees and Mr Merrilees girlfriend, Rebecca Beveridge.

The defence successfully argued that Mr Merrilees actions were out of self-defence and the jury found him not guilty of murder after five hours and fifty minutes of deliberations.

There were emotional scenes when the verdict was returned, with a tearful Mr Merrilees thanking the jury as he left the courtroom.

During the trial the defence painted a picture of Mr Cornet as a man prone to aggression, drawing attention to a number of past occasions when he had been violent.

See Thursday’s Stratford Herald for the full story on today’s verdict.