Belfast Telegraph

Man fled from car crash leaving pistol and drugs behind, court told

Belfast High Court.
Belfast High Court.

A man allegedly fled from a car crash, leaving behind an air pistol and drugs scattered on the road, the High Court has heard.

Stephen Thompson, 41, is accused of driving a Peugeot 206 into a garden wall in east Belfast earlier this year.

Prosecutors said a woman who lives at the Ravenswood Park property heard the bang, went out and discovered the engine still running and two bags of suspected cannabis lying beside the vehicle. 

Other witnesses to the collision on February 23 claimed the driver ran off with his arms "full of stuff".

Crown lawyer Kate McKay said police searched the car and found a 1.5kg bag of amphetamines, packets of Temazepam pills and a quantity of ice melting inside.

A revolver-style handgun, later established to be an air pistol, was located in the front passenger footwell, the court heard.

A police drugs dog was brought in, but lost the track at another address.

According to Mrs McKay a resident at that property found a blood-stained jacket in their garden.

Forensic tests allegedly link the coat to Thompson, of Main Street in Greyabbey, Co Down.

His DNA was also found on the steering wheel of the crashed car, the prosecution contended.

Thompson was arrested in Belfast earlier this month.

He faces charges of carrying a firearm or imitation firearm with intent to commit an offence, possessing Class B drugs with intent to supply, and possession of Class C drugs.

He is further accused of failing to stop or remain at the scene of an accident, careless driving and driving while disqualified.

Defence barrister Richard McConkey confirmed his client denied the allegations against him.

"He's saying that he had nothing to do with the weapon, and nothing to do with the drugs," counsel added.

Refusing bail, Mr Justice Maguire said: "There's clearly a prima facie case that the driver of this car was engaged in the supply of unlawful drugs, and in aid of that activity he was carrying a firearm."

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