Northern Ireland

Man charged with stabbing outside north Belfast bar

A north Belfast man has been remanded into custody accused of stabbing another man in a fight outside a bar.

Thomas Dreelan, 21, was charged with causing grievous bodily harm to Patrick Hughes with intent on 20 November.

The charge arose after Mr Dreelan, Mr Hughes and another man were involved in a fight outside a north Belfast bar.

A detective constable told Belfast Magistrates Court that Mr Hughes remains in hospital in a "stable condition."

He added that police had seized three weapons - a baseball bat, a flick knife and a barbecue fork as part of the investigation.

Objecting to Mr Dreelan being released on bail, the officer said there was a high likelihood that he would try to interfere with the investigation.

The officer alleged that while in custody the accused had called his father and was overheard telling him: "Get him to withdraw the charges and if you don't, get someone else to get him to withdraw the charges."

"Police have no doubt that he will try to prevent witnesses from giving evidence or making statements," the officer said.

"We believe that he may take matters into his own hands."

Mr Dreelan's solicitor suggested there was confusion surrounding the "melee" with his client claiming that he was in fact the victim and had been set upon by a number of men.

"Yet it's my client who has been charged," the solicitor said.

Refusing the bail application and remanding Mr Dreelan, from Cliftonpark Court, into custody to appear again on 15 December by videolink, a judge said her "biggest concern is the interference with witnesses".

On Saturday, a 21-year-old man was charged with grievous bodily harm with intent over the incident.

A 26-year-old man arrested in connection with the incident was released pending further police enquiries.