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Two men remanded into custody over £2m Belfast cannabis seizure

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The haul of cannabis that was seized in Belfast on Wednesday. Credit: PSNI

The haul of cannabis that was seized in Belfast on Wednesday. Credit: PSNI

The haul of cannabis that was seized in Belfast on Wednesday. Credit: PSNI

Two men have been remanded into custody after appearing in court on drugs charges linked to a £2m cannabis seizure.

Detectives from the PSNI's Organised Crime Branch seized the Class B drugs following searches conducted at three properties in south and east Belfast on Wednesday.

Xian Li Chen (55) and 32-year-old Long Chen appeared at Belfast Magistrates' Court on Friday via a videolink from Musgrave Street police station.

They were both charged with possessing a Class B drug with intent to supply, possessing a Class B drug, and conspiracy to supply cannabis.

Both men, of no fixed abode, spoke via a Chinese interpreter and confirmed they understood the charges.

Xian Li Chen was also charged with illegal entry into the UK, and possessing false identification documents.

A police constable told District Judge Fiona Bagnall that he believed he could connect the two accused to the charges.

Barrister Michael Boyd, representing both defendants, said there would be no application for bail "at this stage" and told the court "both accused strongly maintain their innocence".

Mr Boyd asked for a bail application to be listed in three weeks time, and the date was set for August 7.

Both men were remanded into custody and will appear in court again next month.

Belfast Telegraph