A MAN who was involved in the first of the Union flag riots at Belfast City Hall has been jailed for 18 months.
Ordering 22-year-old Ryan Gray to spend nine months in jail and the rest on licence, Belfast Crown Court Judge Corinne Philpott QC told him: "You should have known better – all you had to do was just walk away."
Instead, prosecuting lawyer David Russell outlined how Gray walked back towards east Belfast and was involved in "nakedly sectarian" rioting for several hours.
CCTV footage which had been gathered by the police was played to the court which showed Gray as part of a rioting crowd at various locations in the east of the city on December 3 last year.
Wearing an easily identifiable blue and white tracksuit top, Gray, from Southland Dale in Belfast, could be seen milling through the crowd and throwing six missiles at police lines and the Short Strand.
He pleaded guilty to a single count of rioting.