Page last updated at 13:28 GMT, Monday, 19 April 2010 14:28 UK

Guns 'were for dissidents' police claim in court

court

Guns and ammunition which a Belfast man allegedly had in his possession were for dissident republicans, police have claimed in a Belfast court.

They also claimed Joseph Woods, 34, of no fixed abode but with an address at Cavendish Street, west Belfast, knows where other weapons are.

Mr Woods is accused of possessing two rifles and ammunition with intent to endanger life or damage property.

The charges link to guns recovered by police in north Belfast on 15 April.

At Belfast Magistrates' Court on Monday, a detective confirmed that one of the rifles fires pellets.

The court was told that the recovered ammunition included bullets used in assault rifles.

"Police believe the firearms and ammunition in Mr Woods possession were intended to be used by dissident republicans who have stepped up their violence in recent weeks," the detective claimed.

A defence solicitor argued Mr Woods should get bail. He said his client went to the police voluntarily.

"What we have is media pressure generated to try and suggest this man is a dissident republican, yet police do not table a charge of membership of a proscribed organisation," he said.

"One of the items is a pellet gun. The other rifle referred to is from the 1960s and strapped together with tape."

Mr Woods was remanded in custody to appear again via video-link next month.



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