Published Friday, 30 May 2014
The pet died a week after the attack. (© UTV)
At Craigavon Crown Court, Jamie Downey and Andrew Richard Stewart, both 22, pleaded not guilty to a single charge of causing unnecessary suffering to Cody the collie dog on 26 August 2012.
Minutes earlier in the proceedings people in the packed-out public gallery, which was flanked with police officers, had clapped and cheered a decision by Judge Patrick Lynch QC not to dismiss the charge against the pair.
Lawyers for Downey, from Chestnut Hall Avenue and Stewart, from Wellington Parks, both in Moira and for the prosecution had told the judge there was still some outstanding applications to be addressed before the trial which is due to be heard on 16 June.
In an incident which shocked and horrified the country, three-year-old border collie Cody suffered horrific burns to most of her body when she was doused in petrol and set on fire in the Maghaberry Road area of Moira.
Tragically and despite the best efforts of veterinary surgeons, she had to be put to sleep a week after the brutal attack.
Releasing both Downey and Stewart on continuing bail, the judge listed the case for review next week.
© UTV News