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Robber threatened to 'stab the life out of' disabled man in Belfast, court hears

Defence counsel Michael Boyd said client was 'home asleep at the time'

A knife-wielding robber attacked a disabled man in Belfast and threatened to "stab the life out of him", the High Court heard on Friday.

The victim, who uses a crutch to walk, was pulled to the ground during the Boxing Day bid to steal his wallet containing up to £600, prosecutors said.

His attacker fled empty-handed after a so-called Good Samaritan intervened in the incident at North Queen Street.

Details emerged as bail was refused to a 21-year-old man accused of targeting him.

Anthony Wylie, of Kansas Avenue in the city, faces charges of possessing an offensive weapon with intent, attempted robbery, and possession of cocaine.

A Crown lawyer claimed Wylie knows the victim and approached him on the street asking for a cigarette and then £10 in cash.

The accused allegedly tried to check the man's pockets, pushed him against a fence as his crutch to fall and thrust a nine-inch blade in his direction.

"The injured party said the defendant threatened to stab him with the knife, telling him 'If you don't give me everything you have I will stab the life out of you'," the prosecution barrister said.

The two men continued to struggle on the ground until a passer-by appeared.

Mr Justice Deeny was told the victim entrusted him with his wallet before the attacker fled.

He sustained cuts to his lip and finger and facial marks.

Wylie was later arrested and found to have a small quantity of cocaine on him.

It was alleged that he also tried to take drugs concealed inside him while in custody.

Defence counsel Michael Boyd said his client accepts being in possession of cocaine but denied any involvement in the robbery bid.

"He made clear his case that he was at home asleep at the time this incident occurred," Mr Boyd added.

"He will call witnesses from his family to confirm he was at home asleep."

But denying bail, the judge described the attack as "a serious and ugly offence of attempting to rob a gentleman who requires a crutch for his mobility".

Mr Justice Deeny went on: "If a Good Samaritan and police hadn't come along there may have been graver consequences."

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