BATTERED BY FLAG RIOTS SUSPECTS; Hammer thugs linked to protest disorder.
TWO men being blamed for beating a man with hammers have been pictured in a roundup of suspected flag rioters, it was claimed last night.
The pair were part of a four-man gang who attacked the 59-year-old in the Sandy Row district of South Belfast leaving him in a critical condition.
The victim, named locally as Jackie Millar, was set upon after the gang smashed windows at his Linfield Avenue home on Saturday at around 9.30pm.
It is understood the victim confronted the men, some of whom were armed with hammers, who then started to beat him before leaving him lying in the street.
There were conflicting reports last night about whether the gang were loyalist paramilitaries or not with some sources claiming the men are known UDA members.
However, other sources, including the UPRG insisted the men were not in the UDA.
One source in the area told the Mirror that two of the gang were pictured in the media recently as part of the PSNI's efforts to identify alleged loyalist rioters.
Pictures of hundreds of people suspected of being involved in flag and marching linked disorder have been released to the media as the police try to identify and prosecute rioters.
ATTACKED AT HOME Jackie Millar was assaulted in South Belfast