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Anti-drugs campaigner Beck in court over Facebook comments

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The accused appeared at in court in Belfast.

The accused appeared at in court in Belfast.

PA Archive/PA Images

The accused appeared at in court in Belfast.

An anti-drugs campaigner allegedly used his Facebook account to intimidate a man branded an "MI5 tout", a court has been told.

Prosecutors claimed Robert Beck also took to social media to call the victim a "weasel".

Beck, 56, appeared at Newtownards Magistrates' Court, sitting in Belfast, on a charge of breaching a restraining order.

The prohibition was imposed on him in March this year at the conclusion of separate proceedings for alleged threats to kill.

But it was claimed that within a month he violated the order made under protection from harassment legislation.

Beck, with an address at Northland Road in Londonderry, allegedly posted about the man on his own social media account.

"He referred to him as a weasel being hung out to dry, and said (he was) an MI5 tout, messages of that nature," a Crown lawyer submitted.

Opposing Beck's release, a police officer claimed he could flee.

She told the court he was detained in the Donegal area.

District Judge Mark Hamill granted bail to an address approved by police.

Mr Hamill banned the accused from contacting the complainant or making any reference to him.

"Putting things up on Facebook is about as stupid a thing you can do," the judge warned.

"If you want to breach bail that's one way of shouting it from the rooftops."

Belfast Telegraph