Murderer in court on firearms offences
A man currently serving a life sentence for murder has been back in court on a firearms offence.
Ian Hugh Weir - who is one of four men in prison for the January 2012 murder of Comber farm labourer Phillip Strickland - appeared in the dock of Belfast Crown Court on two offences arising from a police search following the fatal shooting.
Weir (29), from Raffrey Road in Crossgar, admitted possessing a handgun without holding a firearms certificate and also possessing a round of ammunition in suspicious circumstances.
The charges arose from a search of property linked to Weir which was conducted in the aftermath of Mr Strickland's murder.
During the search of a garden at Derryboye Road in Crossgar, police discovered a cushion cover buried under a rock. A plastic bag was found inside the cushion cover which contained two balaclavas wrapped around a "large pistol".
Also present was an imitation firearm, which was not prohibited, and inside this was a cartridge which was capable of being fired from the larger pistol.