Published Saturday, 21 September 2013
The men appeared before court on Saturday. (© UTV)
Appearing in the dock of Ballymena Magistrates' Court flanked by police on Saturday, 53-year-old Paul Robert Lemon and Noel Philip Morrison, 50, confirmed they understood the charges against them.
Lemon, from the Seven Mile Straight in Crumlin and Morrison, from Glenmore Walk in Glengormley, are both accused of conspiring to supply and supplying class B cannabis.
Taxi driver Lemon faces further charges of producing cannabis and possessing cannabis while Morrison faces an additional count of possessing cannabis with intent to supply.
All the offences alleged to have occurred last Thursday 19 September.
A detective constable told the court he believes he could connect the pair to the charges and revealed that police uncovered the cannabis, with an estimated street value "in excess" of £618,000.
The officer outlined how the drugs were found in a Chrysler Voyager people carrier, driven by Morrison, shortly after he had left Lemon's house.
Lemon had been arrested earlier after police stopped his silver Mercedes car close to Aldergrove airport.
Nothing was found in his car but a search of Lemon's house uncovered remnants of cannabis on a door along with plastic bags which, the officer claimed, could be forensically linked to the cannabis in Morrison's car.
Objecting to a bail application on behalf of Lemon, the detective constable told the court police feared that if released, further offences would be committed as the operation was the work of an "organised gang" who would try to recoup their losses.
Morrison did not apply for bail. District Judge Magill said he shared police concerns and in refusing Lemon's release, ordered the Kai to appear back in court via video link on 17 October.
© UTV News