'Winkie' Home Free

A leading NI soccer player has been cleared of being involved in a counterfeit money scam in Spain.

Despite a period of detention in two Spanish jails earlier this year, all charges against Linfield footballer William (Winkie) Murphy have been dropped. He had been accused of passing counterfeit money in Spain and had been on bail.

Originally, the Blues star had been arrested earlier in Torremolinos on Spain's Costa del Sol on suspicion of having brought counterfeit money into Spain on a previous visit two years ago.

Throughout his arrest and subsequent detention, he had strenuously denied the original accusation - bringing counterfeit money into the country - which carries a minimum prison sentence of eight years in jail.
News Image
The footballer has already had a taste of life behind bars after he was imprisoned in Spain for two weeks before being released on bail.

"When I woke up in the cell, I thought I was dreaming," he said.

"Waking up in a 10 by eight cell with bars around you, it's frightening, not a very nice experience," Mr Murphy said.

"I am delighted that the charges have been dropped and I can now get on with my life."

Recalling his grim experiences Mr Murphy said there six people were held in his cell.

"They were lying on the floor, people who had been drinking or fighting were coming in and just standing urinating in the corner and stuff."

Asked how he would have coped with an eight-year prison sentence, Murphy said: "It would be grim. I'm not even thinking about that."

See: Linfield Captain Bailed At Spanish Court


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

09 December 2019
Man Charged Over Double ATM Theft
A 26 year-old man has been charged in connection with the theft of a double ATM machine from a supermarket in Antrim. Thieves used a digger to steal the unit from Tesco in the early hours of Friday morning, 06 December. The unit was later recovered by police.
26 June 2009
'Winkie' Flys Home From Spanish Jail
Blues captain, William 'Winkie' Murphy has returned to Northern Ireland following his arrest and temporary imprisonment in Spain on counterfeit money charges. The Linfield player was held as he attended a stag party in Torremolinos last month to face earlier charges of introducing counterfeit bank notes into the country.
27 May 2009
Blues Captain Now Charged Over Counterfeit Allegations
A top Northern Ireland footballer is today facing a possible eight year sentence in a Spanish jail. It has emerged that the captain of Linfield football club, William 'Winkie' Murphy, has been charged with passing counterfeit bank notes in Spain.
21 May 2009
Blue's Star 'Winkie' Still In Spanish Jail
Linfield captain William Murphy is still under arrest in Spain. The 35-year-old centre half, nicknamed 'Winkie', was arrested in Torremolinos (Málaga) on Friday night. His detention seems to be linked with an incident in which Murphy was involved in 2007 during a stag party in Majorca.
03 June 2009
Linfield Captain Bailed At Spanish Court
William 'Winkie' Murphy is to be released on bail from a Spanish prison after his appearance today in a Madrid court. His arrest, last month in Torremolinos (Malaga), was linked with an incident in which Murphy was involved in 2007 during a stag party in Majorca. He was detained then after allegedly being in possession of counterfeit euros.