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Last Updated: Friday, 9 June 2006, 10:20 GMT 11:20 UK
Loyalist membership case dropped
Ihab Shoukri
Ihab Shoukri was charged with UDA/UFF membership
Charges against north Belfast loyalist Ihab Shoukri of UDA and UFF membership have been dropped.

Judge Thomas Burgess ruled at the city's crown court that there was not enough evidence for him to go to trial.

The 32-year-old, of Westland Drive, was also told that charges of professing membership of the UDA and UFF had been dropped as well.

Mr Shoukri has been on bail for almost three years. A prosecution lawyer said there would be no appeal.

He had faced a total of four charges of membership of both the UFF and UDA between February and July 2003 and of professing to be a member of both outlawed organisations between 14 May and 28 May 2003.

'A snapshot in time'

Judge Burgess said that it had be to remembered the charges were "a snapshot in time which is now historic."

He added: "Any case can only be decided on the evidence before the court and evidence which is admissible."

Judge Burgess also said that when deciding on what evidence to put forward, the prosecution "may have to consider wider issues than those before the court".


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