Man bailed in hate crime probe

Man bailed in hate crime probe

An east Belfast man has been granted bail in connection with a police probe into suspected race hate crimes.

A number of ammunition rounds were allegedly found during searches of Richard Cartmill's house at Tullyard Way in the city.The 41-year-old faces a charge of possessing ammunition in suspicious circumstances.He was detained on Tuesday during Operation Reiner - the PSNI's response to a recent spate of suspected racially-motivated offences.As Cartmill appeared before Belfast Magistrates' Court on Wednesday his lawyer insisted there is no evidence linking him to any hate crimes.Opposing bail, a detective involved in the case said information had led to his home being searched.She was pressed further by District Judge Fiona Bagnall on what else could potentially connect the accused to the investigation."I'm concerned, as everybody is concerned, about what seems to be a prevailing increase of hate crimes in particular parts of Belfast," Mrs Bagnall said."If you're making the case that you're concerned for further offending and trying to link it into the context of hate crime... is there anything you're putting forward to me to link him to what has been happening in the community?"The detective replied that apart from the information received by police "there's nothing I can stand over here in court".Judge Bagnall then ruled: "On the basis of what I have heard today I can't say there's sufficient to remand him in custody."Granting bail, she imposed a curfew and ordered the accused to report to police daily.Cartmill will appear in court again in four weeks' time.A 43-year-old man also arrested on Tuesday in the Castlereagh area was later charged with possession of firearms and ammunition with intent to endanger life.He will appear at Newtownards Magistrates' Court on Thursday.A 41-year-old woman was released pending a report to the PPS.

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