Northern Ireland

Belfast flat was a 'fraud factory'

A north Belfast flat was turned into a factory producing fake cheque books and credit cards, the High Court heard.

Geshem Madzukae, 38, faces charges of possessing articles for use in fraud, fraud by false representation, and handling stolen goods.

He was arrested along with a co-accused after police searched his Cliftonville Avenue address in November 2012.

Mr Madzukae denies the charges and was refused bail. He blames a third man who he claimed also lived in the flat.

The prosecution barrister said 81 items were seized in the police raid, including printers, laptops, memory sticks, bank cards and cheques.

Police seized printing equipment, computers and specialist sandpaper used to erase legitimate owners' names during the raid last year.

Strips of sandpaper were also recovered in follow-up searches of another nearby property on the Antrim Road.

Refusing bail, the judge said: "I'm quite satisfied that there is both a risk of further offences and a risk of departure on behalf of this man."