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uvf bullies Man put out of south Belfast home by UVF writes letter of 'thanks' to UVF boss for 'housing points'

The victim of the attack says he will be offered a better house now that he's been 'put out' by paramilitaries

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Colin 'Meerkat' Fulton

Colin 'Meerkat' Fulton

Colin 'Meerkat' Fulton

A man has been forced to quit his home after a series of attacks by south Belfast UVF.

The victim, in his 50s, who doesn’t want to be identified for his own safety, says he was targeted after being wrongly accused of painting graffiti on a UVF mural.

He explained: “A UVF mob connected to Colin ‘Meerkat’ Fulton claimed I’d put graffiti up on a UVF mural, which was b******t. So on May 7 they arrived at my house and attacked me, punching me repeatedly. I couldn’t go to the police because I knew there would be serious repercussions from the UVF if I did.”

Later that day the gang returned and smashed all the front windows of his home on Rockview Street in the Village/Donegall Road area of south Belfast.

“Then a few days later, on May 10, they came back yet again and smashed all the back windows with bricks. The toilet in the bathroom was also destroyed during the attack,” he said.

He had lived there for 15 years.

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The threat notification delivered to the victim after he was 'put out' of his home

The threat notification delivered to the victim after he was 'put out' of his home

The threat notification delivered to the victim after he was 'put out' of his home

He says graffiti was painted on his now-abandoned home criticising local UVF man Colin ‘Meerkat’ Fulton, after which he received a warning from the PSNI saying loyalist paramilitaries were planning an attack on him.

The victim said as a result of the threat he then had to finally quit his home.

“I obviously had to leave the house I’ve lived in for 15 years. I was angry because I’d lived there for so long and liked it there. They blamed me for the graffiti, but I had nothing to do with it.”

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Graffiti appeared on the vacant home of the victim after he had been put out of the area criticising Fulton (some of the graffiti has been blurred-out)

Graffiti appeared on the vacant home of the victim after he had been put out of the area criticising Fulton (some of the graffiti has been blurred-out)

Graffiti appeared on the vacant home of the victim after he had been put out of the area criticising Fulton (some of the graffiti has been blurred-out)

The story took on another bizarre twist when the victim decided to prank Fulton by writing the UVF leader a ‘thank you’ letter after the UVF put him out of the area...

“It’s quite funny looking back on it, but I then went to Fulton’s house nearby and stuck a letter through his front door - thanking the UVF for putting me out of my home, because I now had enough Housing Executive paramilitary ‘intimidation points’ to get a much better pad! So while I have nowhere to stay at the moment, I’m waiting to get a much nicer house…”

The Housing Executive allocates points to those who have been intimidated from their homes by paramilitaries.

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“Meerkat was furious - absolutely livid someone would come to his home to take the piss out of him.”

In a statement, a spokesman for Fulton said the allegations against him were 'wholly false'.

“Mr Fulton has been subject to a persistent course of harassment by an individual, which remains under PSNI investigation.

“The claims presented in the article are rejected in their entirety as wholly false. Moreover, Mr Fulton as with every other citizen- is entitled to be treated with respect and dignity.

In 2017, Fulton tried to sue the Sunday World for investigating his activities. He didn’t turn up to the Court of Appeal as a judge threw out his appeal against an earlier High Court judgment which had dismissed his claims for damages after he claimed our exposure of the thug was tantamount to harassment.

It was a landmark judgment meaning the press could continue to expose paramilitaries like Fulton the length and breadth of Northern Ireland.

The Lord Chief Justice said on that day: “In our view it is an entirely appropriate role for the press to draw to the attention of the public allegations of serious wrongdoing.”

The judgment continued: “In considering reasonableness in the context of investigative journalism we accept that there is a public interest in examining allegations of criminal behaviour by paramilitaries linked to the UVF in the south Belfast area with a view to publication.

“The role of the press in exposing alleged wrongdoing is all the more important where the PSNI accepts that there is a problem of paramilitary criminality but is unable to take effective steps to stop it.”

This story has been updated to include comments from a spokesman for Colin Fulton.

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