| 9.2°C Belfast

Two charged over unrest on night of Lyra McKee's murder seek bail changes

Lyra McKee

The main evidence against two men charged with committing public order offences on the night journalist Lyra McKee was murdered in Londonderry, was an analysis of 24 photographs, a court heard yesterday.

The disclosure was made by barrister Eoghan Devlin, who represents one of the two men, both of whom applied for variations to their bail conditions at Londonderry Magistrates' Court.

The applicants, Paul McIntyre (52), from Ballymagowan Park and Christopher Gillen (39), from Balbane Pass, both in Derry, are on court bail charged with riotous assembly, throwing and possessing a petrol bomb and with the arson of a tipper truck in the Creggan on April 18, 2019. Gillen is further charged with hijacking the tipper truck.

Both are excluded from the Creggan area and the city centre as part of their bail conditions.

Paddy MacDermott, solicitor for Gillen, said his client wanted his bail conditions varied to enable him to visit his family home in the Creggan for two hours each Wednesday afternoon.

"During those two hours he will remain in the house. He will not wander around and meet people," he said.

A detective constable said she opposed the application for reasons of witness protection and for fear of the applicant re-offending.

Mr MacDermott said the presence of Gillen in his family home in Creggan "would not have any chilling effect on any witness".

However, District Judge Barney McElholm refused the bail variation application and adjourned the case until April 2 for a preliminary enquiry hearing.

He granted the application to allow McIntyre to live at an address inside the current exclusion zone, but ordered that he access and exit the address only via an approved direct route.

Belfast Telegraph