Belfast Telegraph

Accused is cleared over illegal flag march

BY ALAN ERWIN

A man has been acquitted of taking part in an illegal march linked to the Union flag protests.

In what is seen as a test case, Adam Brennan was cleared of taking part in an unnotified public procession after insisting he had not heard police warnings.

The 26-year-old, of Rochester Avenue in Belfast, was before Belfast Magistrates Court in connection with events on December 15 last year when marchers were en route from east Belfast to protest at restrictions on the flying of the Union flag at City Hall.

Around the Queen's Bridge, police announced over a loudhailer that the procession was unlawful.

In evidence at a contested hearing, Mr Brennan said he had not heard them because of the noise and would not have taken part if he had known it was illegal.

Defence lawyer Richard McConkey argued that being unaware of the unlawful status provided a defence.

District Judge Ken Nixon ruled that he should be acquitted.

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