Six in court over illegal republican parade in Lurgan

By Richard Morgan
BBC NI reporter

image source, Press Eye.
image captionMasked men carrying flags marched along the Levin Road in Lurgan on Saturday afternoon

Six men have appeared in court charged in connection with an illegal republican Easter parade in Lurgan in County Armagh.

The men face charges including taking part in an unnotified procession and wearing clothing or having articles as a member or supporter of a proscribed organisation.

All six were released on bail.

A police officer told the court he could connect all the defendants with the charges.

The men are:

  • Eamon Green, 30, of Falls Road, Belfast in County Antrim.
  • Martin Conlon, 48, of Tarry Drive, Lurgan, County Armagh.
  • Emmet Donnan, 30, of Colin Mill, Dunmurry in County Antrim.
  • Matthew O'Donnell, 39, of Lislane Drive, Londonderry.
  • Gary Doherty, 36, of Old Mountfield Road, Omagh in County Tyrone.
  • Christopher Hamill, 28, of Lurgantarry, Lurgan, faces the same charges plus three charges of assault on police.

There was a significant police presence both inside and outside Lisburn Courthouse.

Supporters of the accused were in the public gallery.

image captionThere was a significant police presence outside Lisburn Courthouse

Bail was granted on the conditions the accused did not come within 200 metres of an unnotified parade and that the co-accused did not contact one another.

There were cheers and claps from the public gallery.

The court was told that the men were arrested during speeches at a dissident parade.

All men were said to be members of the colour party.

The police officer said signs were displayed and notice was given to organisers that the parade was unlawful.

The court was told those involved were given time to disperse before the arrests were made.

The case will be heard again in Craigavon on 27 April.