Two men face trial accused of plot to murder Celtic soccer manager

Two men are to stand trial accused of conspiring to murder Celtic manager Neil Lennon and high-profile supporters of the club.

Trevor Muirhead, 43, and Neil McKenzie, 42, are accused of plotting to kill Mr Lennon, former MSP Trish Godman, lawyer Paul McBride QC and various people in the premises of Cairde Na Heireann in Glasgow by sending improvised explosive devices to them.

The pair denied all charges against them when they appeared at Glasgow High Court yesterday. They are expected to stand trial in November.

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The men are accused of sending Mr Lennon a package which they allegedly believed comprised an improvised explosive device, capable of igniting and exploding, causing severe injury and death to another person.

It is alleged that the package, sent to Mr Lennon at the Celtic FC training centre at Lennoxtown, held a plastic bottle containing the explosive substance triacetone tri-peroxide with a wire attached and a plastic bag containing a bag of nails and a watch component.

They are charged with sending similar devices to Ms Godman at an address in Bridge of Weir and to Cairde Na Heireann in Glasgow.

It is alleged that the package sent to Mr McBride at Advocates Library, Parliament House, Edinburgh, comprised a plastic bottle containing petrol, with wire attached, a plastic glove, nails and a watch component.

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The men are charged with sending the devices with the intention that the contents would ignite and explode when opened, causing severe injury and death to the recipients.

It is alleged the offence, which happened between March 1 and April 15 2011, was aggravated by religious prejudice.

The pair face an alternative charge that they conspired to cause an explosion “likely to endanger life or cause serious injury to property”.

It is alleged they sent packages to Mr Lennon, Ms Godman, Mr McBride and Cairde Na Heireann intending to cause such an explosion, in breach of the Explosive Substances Act 1883.

The offence was allegedly aggravated by religious prejudice.

Lord Brodie set a trial date for November 21. The trial is expected to last around three weeks.