Man linked to loyalist feud has curfew relaxed so he can have ‘social life’

A Co Antrim man allegedly linked to loaded guns seized in a loyalist feud investigation wants his curfew relaxed so he can have a social life, the High Court heard today.

David Weir is currently on bail accused of having one of two pistols police claim were ready for imminent use as part of the dispute in Carrickfergus.

The 35-year-old sought permission to stay out until 11pm to bring him into line with a co-defendant.

His barrister, Michael Boyd, argued: “He simply wants his curfew extended so he can have a little bit of a social life.”

Madam Justice McBride agreed to a partial, one-hour relaxation, meaning he must now be indoors by 10pm.

Weir, of Knockleigh Drive in Greenisland, is accused of possessing a firearm or ammunition with intent to endanger life.

He was charged following forensic tests on two pistols recovered from a car at Buskin Place in Carrickfergus on October 28 last year.

The weapons had hollowed-out bullets in the chambers and other ammunition concealed in a glove and cloth bag.

A half-full five litre can of fuel was found in the boot of the Vauxhall Vectra.

A Crown lawyer told the court that the seizure is being linked to an ongoing feud in Carrickfergus which has cost more than £1.5m to police.

“Police believe the loaded firearms were to be used in the immediate future,” she said.

“The canister of petrol was to be used to set the vehicle alight after the incident.”

Weir’s DNA was allegedly found on the magazine for one of the pistols, the prosecutor confirmed.

Opposing his bid to stay out later, she argued: “The gun was discovered at 10pm and looked to be ready for use imminently.”

But Mr Boyd insisted there was nothing to distinguish Weir from a co-accused on the same charge whose curfew starts at 11pm.

“He strongly denies being involved in this case,” Mr Boyd added.

Granting the one-hour extension, Madam Justice McBride acknowledged issues about family and social life.