Judge’s anger at drunks in ‘Skid Row’ Belfast
A High Court judge has hit out at menacing drunks for turning parts of Belfast into no-go areas.
Mr Justice McLaughlin launched the withering attack on those causing havoc as he dealt with two separate bail applications.
In one case it was claimed a drunk man aggressively abused the manager of a restaurant on Botanic Avenue before lurching into a table where two people were having a drink.
In the second alleged incident a man is accused of going into a kebab shop on the Dublin Road, armed with a bladed instrument, carrying out an assault and causing criminal damage.
Dealing with the first case, Mr Justice McLaughlin said: “If these people want to live on Skid Row, get out of our lives, clear off somewhere else.”
The judge added: “You can't walk down Botanic, you can't walk the lower Donegall Road, you can't walk Shaftesbury Square because these people leave their filth and dirt over the place. It's Skid Row.
“It's unsafe to do it. You can't run a business and get peace and quiet in the area without these people... making life hell.
“It's time somebody stood up and said ‘we are not having it', and did something about it.”