A Chinese man said to have links with international organised crime failed in his bid for compassionate bail after the application was branded “hopeless”.
Ting Guo, with an address in Ebor Street, Belfast, had wanted several hours bail to visit and bond with his newborn baby son.
However, Judge Philip Babington said he considered “this a hopeless application and I intend to refuse it”.
Prosecution lawyer Philip Henry told the Londonderry Recorder, sitting in Belfast, that Guo, in breach of bail conditions in the Repulic of Ireland where he had been seeking asylum, could be forensically linked to a £15,000 parcel of money sent from Northern Ireland to England.
Mr Henry said 29-year-old Guo, who in addition to transferring criminal property, also faces charges of possessing and intending to supply cannabis, and possession of criminal property, was arrested last November in a car containing between £30,000 and £40,000 worth of cannabis.
The lawyer added that Guo also had two small packets of cannabis in his pocket and £1,700 in cash, which he initially claimed partly came from gambling, and that £1,000 belonged to a friend.
“We suggest this is an implausible account,” said Mr Henry, who also claimed that Guo held an “elevated position” and could be “linked to organised crime and has access to money”.
Defence lawyer Declan Quinn said all Guo wanted was a few hours bail to visit his partner who gave birth to their first child this week. Guo, he said, wanted to see and bond with his baby son, and at all times would be in the company of his solicitor who would pick him up and return him directly to prison.
Mr Quinn claimed that if Guo wanted to abscond he would have applied for bail before, not once, but on several occasions. As it is, this is his first and only application, and for a limited period of hours in the company of a solicitor.
However, Mr Henry said while the court could take some comfort from Guo being in the company of his solicitor, he would be unable to do anything but call the police, when it would be too late, if Guo did decide to abscond.