Co Armagh teenager charged over social media death threat to New Zealand PM

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern giving a press conference after the shootings at two mosques in Christchurch on March 15. Pic: TVNZ via AP
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern giving a press conference after the shootings at two mosques in Christchurch on March 15. Pic: TVNZ via AP

A Co Armagh teenager has appeared in court charged with using social media to make a death threat to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Matthew Burns, 19, from Dundalk Road, Newtownhamilton, was also charged with making similar threats to the Mayor of London Sadiq Kahn.

At Newry Magistrates’ Court earlier today he was charged with using a public communications network to send a message or other matter that was of a menacing character.

The alleged offences took place on Facebook and Twitter on dates between December 1 2018 and March 20 March 2019.

It is understood the message to the New Zealand Prime Minister was sent in the wake of the mass shootings at two mosques in the city of Christchurch which claimed 50 lives.

A PSNI detective told the court he could connect the accused to the charges.

Burns was released on £500 bail to his parents’ custody.

According to the NI Courts Service, the case was adjourned until May 8.