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Punter goes on trial over betting shop death

A PUNTER charged with manslaughter following the death of a betting shop manager last summer goes on trial at Newcastle Crown Court on Monday morning.

Father-of-three Jeff Hilland, 52, collapsed at Pagebet's shop in Pelton, near Chester-le-Street, County Durham, after an argument with a customer who had been refused a bet on a dog race, which allegedly led to astruggle between the pair.

Hilland, from nearby South Moor, was taken to Durham's University Hospital and detained in intensive care, but died four days later on June 11.

Trevor Hall, 36, from Chester-le-Street, was arrested soon after the incident and later charged with manslaughter following a two-month police investigation.

Hilland had 25 years of experience in the betting industry, the last three of which he had spent with Pagebet for whom he had previously managed a shop in Rowlands Gill, near Gateshead.

Court officials have set aside four days for the trial.

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