UVF supergrass Haggarty's case is put back until April
A high-profile court case involving loyalist supergrass Gary Haggarty has been postponed until the middle of next year, it has been decided.
Haggarty is facing an unprecented 202 charges - including five murders, five attempted murders and 66 firearms offences - linked to UVF terrorism in the 1990s and 2000s.
The 44-year-old former tyre fitter, whose address in court was given as c/o PSNI Knocknagoney, did not appear at Belfast Crown Court yesterday, where his legal team launched an application to postpone his arraignment.
Haggary was due to be arraigned this month on the offences spanning a period of 16 years, including directing the activities of the UVF in south-east Antrim, as well as being a member of the outlawed organisation.
The charges were due to be formally put to Haggarty for the first time in a Crown Court, and his plea was due to be entered.
However, defence barrister Martin O'Rourke QC asked that the arraignment be postponed until after Easter next year, to allow full consideration of the charges and papers involved in the case.
While it emerged that the Crown would not be opposing the application to adjourn the arraignment until after Easter, prosecutor Ciaran Murphy QC said it would be "prudent" to review the case in February.
Mr Justice Treacy listed the arraignment to take place next April, following the review process on February 3, 2017.