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Dublin: 7 °C Wednesday 18 September, 2019
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Man wanted over 2007 double murder in Belfast brought before High Court in Dublin

The victims’ bodies were found hours apart in Belfast on 12 March 2007.

File photo.
File photo.
Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

A MAN WANTED in respect of a double murder in Northern Ireland over ten years ago has appeared before the High Court in Dublin.

35-year-old Gerard Lagan originally from Belfast, with an address at Shamrock Grove, Dunleer, in Co Louth was brought before Justice Tony O’Connor on foot of a European Arrest Warrant seeking his surrender issued by the authorities in Northern Ireland.

He is facing charges in connection with the murders of Edward Burns and Joseph Jones in Belfast. The men’s bodies were found hours apart in the city on 12 March 2007.

Burns, aged 36, from Ardoyne in north Belfast, was found shot in the head in a car park near a GAA club at Bog Meadows off the Falls Road. Jones, aged 38, from Poleglass in West Belfast, was found battered to death in an alleyway in Ardoyne.

The court heard that Lagan was arrested in Dunleer at 8:30am on this morning by Detective Sargeant Jim Kirwan of the Garda Extradition Unit.

The arrest was made following a joint operation involving members of the Garda Special Detective Unit, and the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, also heard.

Giving details of Lagan’s arrest, charge and caution Detective Sargeant Kirwan said that after he put the charges contained in the warrant to Lagan, and asked him if he knew what they were about, he replied “no”.

The detective added that when he put the charges contained in the EAW to Lagan on a second subsequent occasion following the arrest, he made no reply.

After being satisfied that Lagan is the person whose surrender is being sought and that he had been informed of his rights the Judge remanded Lagan in custody to Cloverhill Prison.

Lagan did not speak during the brief hearing this afternoon and was represented in court by barrister John Berry Bl.

No application for bail was made, however, Berry said it was his client’s intention to seek bail at a later date.

Following the remand in custody Berry said that if it were possible his client would prefer to be remanded in custody to Portlaoise Prison, rather than Cloverhill.

However, the court was informed that the location of Lagan’s custody was a matter for the Minister for Justice and not the court.

The case will return before the courts on 18 September.

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Aodhan O Faolain

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