Northern Ireland

West Belfast: Father and son on death threats charges

The car in which the victim was shot
Image caption The men were charged by police investigating a gun attack on a man in a car at Rossnareen Avenue on Thursday

A father and son accused of threatening to kill a man who was shot in the head in west Belfast have appeared before Belfast Magistrates' Court.

Edward McKay, 50, and his 18-year-old son of the same name, who both live at Shaws Court, west Belfast, are accused of making telephone threats on Monday.

The victim, who is in his 40s, was critically injured when he was shot a car in Rossnareen Avenue on Thursday.

Bail was granted but both men remain in custody pending a prosecution appeal.

A detective told the court that during one of the threatening phone calls made to the victim, a man was heard to say: "Look what you have done to me.

"I'm putting one in the back of your head."

The detective said the call was made to a mobile phone belonging to the victim's wife, who told police she recognised the voice as that of Mr McKay Sr.

The shooting victim, who is a member of the traveller community, remains in a critical condition in hospital.

Defence lawyers for both men said they deny making threats to kill and have alibis for the time of the shooting.

The court heard Mr McKay Sr was seen on CCTV at the time, and his son was at home with his girlfriend.

The judge said the court could not proceed in terms of speculation that the two men were involved in the shooting.

He agreed to release both men on bail with strict conditions, instructing them to wear tags, report to the police daily and observe a night time curfew at their family home.

However, their release was delayed after a prosecution lawyer said he is appealing the bail decision in the High Court.

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