Prisoner called before Craigavon Court to answer ‘terror’ charges

Craigavon Courthouse. INPT21-239.
Craigavon Courthouse. INPT21-239.

A sentenced prisoner who allegedly had a list of police officer and judges names has appeared in court in Northern Ireland to face terror charges.

Connor Hughes, who is serving time at Maghaberry high security jail, is accused of having information likely to be of use to terrorists.

The 23-year-old refused to sit during a hearing at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court.

At one point District Judge Mervyn Bates ordered the defendant to stop chewing gum.

“I have told you to stop chewing. If you do not wish to sit that’s fine,” the judge said.

Hughes, whose address is c/o Maghaberry Prison in Co Antrim, is charged with having a list of names of police officers and judges on October 2 2015.

He spoke twice during the short court appearance to confirm his identity and, only when prompted by the judge, that he understood the single charge against him.

He said: “I just said ‘yeah’.”

A detective constable from the Police Service of Northern Ireland told the court he believed he could connect the accused to the charge.

Defence solicitor Leo Morrison had no questions for the officer.

Hughes, who was produced from custody at Maghaberry, had neat cropped brown hair and was dressed in a two-tone blue jumper and beige trousers.

For much of the hearing he stood with his arms folded or with his hands clasped behind his back.

As he was led back to the cells he waved and smiled at two women in the public gallery.

He was ordered to appear at Lisburn Magistrates’ Court via video-link next month.