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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 July 2006, 17:05 GMT 18:05 UK
Two men admit paramilitary links
Two men from Merseyside have admitted being members of the loyalist paramilitary organisation the Ulster Volunteer Force.

Roy Barwise, 47, and John Irwin, 43, both from Anfield, were part of the Liverpool Battalion of the UVF.

The pair were senior members of the group, Manchester Crown Court heard.

Both men, involved with Orange Lodges in Liverpool, pleaded guilty to membership of a proscribed organisation - the UVF.

They were arrested last July after police mounted raids following an attempt to harm loyalist Johnny Adair.

Explosives, a machine gun, pistols, shotguns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition were found in the raids on Merseyside.

'Inner sanctum'

The pair were due to go on trial, but pleaded guilty.

The court was shown a video of white-shirted loyalists marching in Monkstown, near Belfast. On a mural on the side of a house under a painting of Loyalist hero Sir Edward Carson was the name of Lee Irwin, the son of the defendant, who died of cancer aged 16.

The name on the mural represented a "military honour" to the father, said David Turner QC, prosecuting. The video went on to show a phalanx of the marchers raising their arms to fire a volley of pistols into the air.

A second video showed inside the Derry Club in Liverpool, a meeting point for Orange Lodge members on Merseyside.

In a room not open to members of the public, the video showed the "inner sanctum" - its walls covered with UVF flags and banners.

Father-of-two Barwise also pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of ammunition, possession of firearms and explosives and supplying ammunition.

Both men will be sentenced on Wednesday.


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