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Last Updated: Wednesday, 13 September 2006, 10:48 GMT 11:48 UK
Northern Bank accused seeks tapes
Northern Bank
The 26m robbery happened at the Northern Bank
A lawyer for a man accused of the 26m Northern Bank robbery has accused the prosecution of not handing over audio undercover surveillance tapes.

Belfast Magistrates Court was told the surveillance was carried out at the home of bank employee Christopher Ward and an apartment in the Canary Islands.

Mr Ward stayed at the aprtment in Feurteventura while on holiday.

Mr Ward, 24, from Colinmill, Poleglass, Belfast, denies the robbery at the Northern Bank's Belfast headquarters.

Another man, Dominic McEvoy, 22, from Mulandra Park, in Kilcoo, County Down, also denies the robbery which happened at Donegall Square, on 20 December 2004.

Both men are out on high court bail.

Solicitor Joe McVeigh said: "We have asked that these tapes be disclosed to the defence and the crown's response is that the matter is with senior counsel," said Mr McVeigh.

"We are asking that these tapes should be served on us promptly so that we can start to prepare a defence."

Mr McVeigh also asked Magistrate Ken Nixon to certify the appointment of a barrister to assist in preparing the defence case.

"Senior counsel is required now for consultation in the overall preparation of the defence case in what up until a few months ago this was the largest robbery in the United Kingdom," he said.

"I don't want to be in a position where issues arise in Mr Ward's defence that require the advice of senior counsel and one is not available."

Mr Nixon said the application would be better made at the next remand hearing when the position regarding the prosecution's attitude would be clearer.

Mr Ward and Mr McEvoy were remanded on continuing bail until 4 October along with Martin McAliskey, 39, from Ballybeg Road, Coalisland, County Tyrone, who faces a charge relating to a van alleged to have been used in the robbery.

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