Man accused to trying to set neighbour on fire is refused bail

A north Belfast man who allegedly tried to set his neighbour on fire must remain in custody, a judge ordered today.

Laganside Courts
Laganside Courts

Terry Mairs, 29, is charged with attempting to murder the other man by dousing him with accelerant during a row outside their homes on April 21.

Mairs, of Silverstream Avenue, also faces a count of possessing an offensive weapon, namely a bottle of petrol and lighter, with intent.

He was detained again on Monday for allegedly breaching bail by being out all night despite a curfew.

Defence barrister Michael Boyd told Belfast Magistrates’ Court Mairs had been assaulted after leaving his mother’s home to go to a local shop.

He then spent a period in hospital, it was contended.

Opposing Mairs’ re-release, police stressed the seriousness of the charges.

“He poured flammable liquid over a neighbour and tried to set him alight,” a PSNI officer claimed.

A previous court heard the dispute centred on Mairs’ clothing.

According to police the alleged victim’s teenage stepson made a remark about a long coat he was wearing.

Threats were issued before Mairs ran out of his house and threw the contents of a bottle over the other man, it was claimed.

Several attempts were allegedly made to set him alight during a confrontation witnessed by others living on the street.

Mairs emphatically denies brandishing a lighter or pouring any flammable liquid over the other man.

He has made counter claims of being the victim of a campaign since moving into the street.

But refusing to grant bail to Mairs once more, District Judge Fiona Bagnall said she had “grave concerns”.

She ruled: “I’m going to remand him in custody until July 7 on video-link.”