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Men in court over attempted murder at Belfast house party

By Alan Erwin

Two men appeared in court on Monday charged with attempted murder in connection with a stabbing near a house party in south Belfast.

Shane Duffy and Geroid Ramsey, both aged 20, are accused of a knife attack on another man in the Hatfield Street area on Saturday morning.

The victim, aged in his 20s, was treated in hospital for wounds which are not believed to be life threatening.

Duffy, of Galway Street in Belfast, is further charged with threats to kill, possession of an offensive weapon with intent to commit an indictable offence, and disorderly behaviour.

Ramsey, from Islandbawn Street in the city, faces a second count of assault on police.

Both were granted bail but banned from entering the area surrounding Hatfield Street.

Belfast Magistrates' Court heard a party had been held there before the alleged attack occurred outside.

The victim has provided a statement indicating one of two people may have carried out the stabbing.

Defence lawyers argued that no CCTV or forensic evidence has been obtained at this stage.

Duffy's clothes were seized and are set to undergo examination, a judge was told.

It was also disclosed that searches have failed to recover the knife used in the attack.

The defendants deny the charges against them.

Duffy's solicitor, Eoghan McKenna, claimed police have been given a confusing account of what happened at the house and outside.

"His family are horrified about his alleged involvement in such a serious incident," Mr McKenna added.

Despite police objections, the two accused were released from custody on strict conditions.

District Judge Fiona Bagnall imposed an exclusion zone, night-time curfew and alcohol ban.

Duffy and Ramsey are due back in court next month.

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