Forty-one people charged over dissident republican march

The charge relates to a republican parade in Lurgan in May 2016. Pic: Pacemaker
The charge relates to a republican parade in Lurgan in May 2016. Pic: Pacemaker
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More than 40 people have been charged with taking part in an illegal republican parade in Lurgan.

In total, 28 men and 13 women, mainly from across Northern Ireland but three from the Republic of Ireland, were all jointly accused on a single count of taking part in an un-notified parade on May 28 2016.

The charge arose following a dissident republican parade in the Kilwilkie area that Saturday afternoon.

Eighteen of the defendants were from the Lurgan area with others coming from Rasharkin, Bellaghy, Feeny, Castledawson and Magherafelt.

None of the defendants attended court, where a prosecuting lawyer told Deputy District Judge Peter Magill that for 11 of them, the charge had been withdrawn with a police caution given.

In relation to the other 30, the lawyer asked for their cases to be adjourned for two weeks to ascertain whether a caution was suitable and if not, then for the defendants’ pleas to be indicated.

The case will be mentioned again on August 30.

One of the 41, Gavin McKenna, from Victoria Gardens in Lurgan, faces similar charges on another bill of indictment.

Jointly accused with 51-year-old Audrey Sharpe, from Drumbeg, Tullygally, Lurgan, the pair are accused of taking part in an un-notified parade on March 26 2016 and wearing clothing, namely berets, military jumpers etc, giving rise to a reasonable suspicion that they were a “member or supporter of a proscribed organisation.”

That case was also adjourned for two weeks.