Belfast Telegraph

Petrol bomber bailed ahead of sentencing for rioting in Bogside

'Defence barrister Stephen Mooney said Moore had been in custody since his arrest last July and during his time in Maghaberry Prison he had been a model inmate' (stock photo)
'Defence barrister Stephen Mooney said Moore had been in custody since his arrest last July and during his time in Maghaberry Prison he had been a model inmate' (stock photo)

By George Jackson

A 23-year-old man arrested after two days of rioting in the Bogside area of Londonderry last summer has admitted throwing petrol bombs at police officers.

At his Crown Court arraignment yesterday, John Paul Moore, from Carleton Court in Ballymagroarty, pleaded guilty to four charges of throwing petrol bombs and five charges of possessing petrol bombs.

He also admitted riotous assembly and causing criminal damage to a police vehicle.

Moore, who the court heard has a relevant criminal record, committed the offences last July 12 and 13.

A defence application for the defendant to be released on bail pending sentencing in August was opposed by a barrister for the Public Prosecution Service. Defence barrister Stephen Mooney said Moore had been in custody since his arrest last July and during his time in Maghaberry Prison he had been a model inmate.

He said when he was previously refused bail Moore had faced an additional charge of possessing an explosive device, but that charge had since been withdrawn.

Opposing bail, the prosecution barrister said Moore had previously breached court-imposed bail conditions, including removing an electronic monitoring tag.

He said Moore's offending took place over two days and nights of rioting in Fahan Street in Derry last July during which a number of petrol bombs were thrown at police.

"These public order offences took place against the background of parades. The risk of reoffending if granted bail is enhanced because we are now approaching that time of the year again," he said.

"There is a heightened risk of him reoffending given his background and bail is opposed in all circumstances."

Judge Philip Babington said on balance he was willing to grant bail until Moore is sentenced in mid-August.

"You are very much on test between now and then", he told Moore.

"If you put one foot wrong you will be going back to Maghaberry and you will remain there for quite a long time."

The defendant was released on his own bail of £300.

He will also be electronically tagged and must report to the police twice weekly.

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