Sword ‘bid to kill police’ on Twelfth

Published Thursday, 08 August 2013
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A man has been remanded in custody accused of trying to kill a police officer with a ceremonial sword during Twelfth of July disorder in north Belfast.

Sword ‘bid to kill police’ on Twelfth
Police came under attack in the Woodvale area of north Belfast on the Twelfth. (© Presseye)

Mark Blaney is alleged to have been a "committed" participant in violence which flared in the Woodvale area of the city.

The 30-year-old, of Alliance Close, Belfast, appeared in court charged with the attempted murder of a PSNI officer.

He is further accused of riotous behaviour and possession of an offensive weapon, namely a ceremonial sword, with intent to commit attempted murder.

Blaney was arrested on Wednesday by police investigating the trouble surrounding a ban on an Orange Order parade past the nationalist Ardoyne district.

Belfast Magistrates' Court heard text messages were sent out giving a meeting place for swords and flags to be handed out.

Opposing Blaney's application for bail, a PSNI constable claimed he showed a commitment to attacking police in a bid to breach the parading determination.

It was alleged that he had the sword for around an hour and remained at the scene after disposing of it. With further marches due to take place in the area, the constable added that tensions remain high.

The court heard Blaney apologised after being charged, telling police: "I didn't intend any harm or to kill anybody."

His lawyer stressed that the text messages referred to meetings within the Orange Lodge, rather than any arrangement to pick up potential weapons.

But District Judge Fiona Bagnall replied: "You can't do anything but put a more sinister interpretation on what was happening."

She refused bail due to the potential for re-offending during the rest of the parading season.

Remanding Blaney in custody to appear again on 5 September, Judge Bagnall said she would consider a change of circumstances if tensions diminish.

© UTV News
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10 Comments
Ryan in An Dun wrote (471 days ago):
@winky Cardiff. What would you know about it? So you think we should just let loyalist do what they want? E.g. Attack police and attack The Lord Mayor. There are a load of people caught on camera kicking and damaging police veichles and not to mention the attempted murder bid. Wise up to yourself. You've been listening too much to DUP propaganda.
Colin in Belfast wrote (471 days ago):
Cognitive dissonance much, "the painted man"? Yes, dropping a breezeblock onto police from a height is attempted murder. But hacking at someone with a SWORD is also attempted murder. It doesn't matter if it was blunt or if it didn't do any injury - that's not a defense. You couldn't claim that, having your gun jam when you tried to shoot someone, you're therefore innocent. Stop trying to rationalize the transgressions of the tribe you happened to be born into.
con in belfast wrote (472 days ago):
the OO is this far ___ form being labelled a dissident organisation.
The painted man in Belfast wrote (472 days ago):
Dropping a breezeblock on a police officers head from the top of a building is attempted murder. That guy served 18 months.Lets see what the loyalist with the blunt sword which seemed to inflict no injury gets. Anyone with a brain will know what point I am making here.
ady in swashbuckler wrote (472 days ago):
He will probably get community service if found guilty, I suppose he'd be fairly handy for a bit of fencing !
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