Belfast Telegraph

News digest: Three in court over warder murder

Two men and a woman accused of involvement in the murder of prison officer David Black will have their committal hearings later this month.

At Craigavon Magistrates Court, District Judge Mervyn Bates told 23-year-old Sean McVeigh, Damien McLaughlin (37) and 29-year-old Fiona McFadden their Preliminary Enquiry would be held at the same court on June 27.

McVeigh, from Victoria Street in Lurgan, is accused of the murder of prison officer Black and possessing an AK47 assault rifle on November 1, 2012.

McLaughlin, from the Kilmascally Road in Dungannon, is accused of buying the car used in the killing in preparation of an act of terrorism.

McFadden, from Killough Gardens in Lurgan, is charged with perverting justice by providing a false alibi.

Mr Black was gunned down on the M1 motorway as he drove to work at Northern Ireland's high-security prison.

The prison officer's killing in November 2012 was claimed by the Real IRA.

Man jailed over diazepam haul

A Belfast man has been jailed for 10 months after he was caught with 5,000 diazepam tablets.

Michael Skelly (23), whose address was given as c/o Maghaberry Prison, pleaded guilty to possessing the Class C drugs with intent to supply.

Belfast Crown Court heard that the haul of tablets was found during a planned search of a property in Belfast where he was staying in August last year.

Prosecution lawyer David McAughey said police found a number of tablets on top of a cabinet in the bathroom.

"A further search uncovered five tubs of tablets with each tub containing around 1,000 tablets,'' said Mr McAughey.

Defence solicitor Paul Farrell said Skelly had bought the drugs over the internet and was "self-medicating'' after undergoing an operation in 2010 for a brain tumour.

Judge McFarland sentenced Skelly to 20 months, with 10 months to be spent in custody and the remainder on licence.

Fishermen conference in Co Down

The Fishermen's Mission is holding its national conference for the first time in Newcastle, Co Down.

All of the Fishermen's Mission Superintendents from around the United Kingdom coastline, their small Head Office team and many of their trustees will be taking part.

Chief Executive of charity,, Commodore David Dickens, said: "Each year the Fishermen's Mission holds a National Conference. This is the only opportunity that we have to spend time together as our staff are spread throughout various ports across the UK.

"We use this time to undertake training and to discuss the relevant issues that help to ensure that our vital services remain relevant and appropriate."

Information is available at www.fishermensmission.org.uk or follow them on Facebook. The mission provides financial, emotion and pastoral support to fishermen and their families.

Green light for quarry extension

Enviroment Minister Mark H Durkan has announced planning approval for a 23.8 hectare extension to Demesne Quarry, Glenarm.

This development is for a sideways extension of the Co Antrim quarry southwards into Tully Field.

It will also restore Parishagh Quarry for agricultural uses to the original ground level.

The Demesne Quarry will be restored in part to original ground level.

Mr Durkan said: "This approval will bring an economic boost for both Northern Ireland and Glenarm, securing jobs existing in the area for 25 years.

"The Ulster White Limestone extracted at this site is very limited in Northern Ireland.

"This extension means that this important resource can continue to supply the Irish markets north and south," he added.

Man dies in cell following arrest

A man in his 20s has died in a police cell.

It is understood that David McGowan, who was being detained at Lisburn police station, had been arrested late on Thursday night.

He died in the early hours of yesterday morning.

The Police Ombudsman's Office is investigating the death.

A spokesman for the office said: "Investigators have been at the scene throughout the night and have also spoken to his immediate family."

They will now speak to witnesses and will investigate the actions of police up to the point he was discovered.

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