16/02/2017 BBC Newsline


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Tonight's top stories: The Londonderry man who went


to Syria is found not guilty on


The jury could not reach a verdict on three


The latest on the renewable heat controversy.


Now it emerges tens of thousands of pounds


have been paid out to dormant companies.


Police raid farms on both sides of the border as new figures


And the debate continues over the border,


Both British and Irish governments agree there should be no


And also on the programme: The rugby game between two grammar schools


The Northern Ireland executive did not agree its Budget before the


collapse of the Assembly. I am in Downpatrick to find out what that


means for those helping vulnerable people.


I will be back with the details along with the


A jury in Londonderry has been discharged after failing to reach


a verdict, on three charges, in a case linked to alleged


Eamon Bradley, who's 28, from Melmore Gardens in the city,


was found NOT GUILTY of having explosives with intent


However, the jury told the judge they couldn't reach a verdict


on charges of attending a terrorist training camp and receiving training


in the making or use of weapons for terrorism.


Eamon Bradley said he got on a bus in Derry three years ago, travelled


to Dublin and then got a flight to Istanbul. And that he said he


crossed the border into Syria to help rebel fighters in the war. His


interviews with the police were read to the jury during the trial. This


trial is still down to a number of issues, among them was Eamon Bradley


recording facts when he told detectives he went to Syria to help


rebels or was he a fantasist who might never have been in Syria at


all? The prosecution say Eamon Bradley told the truth about the


events in question and that there was no evidence he was a fantasist


or that he makes things up. But questions were raised about details


of what it told the police. On the one hand, he said he went to Syria


to join the Army of Islam and said he fought in three battles, two


against Government forces and one against IS. But he said he never


fired a shot, never used a grenade and hid under the sun -- under a


tree during the battles. The jury deliberated for five hours and when


it returned, they found Eamon Bradley not guilty on three charges


of high explosives. Then they resumed their deliberations and a


short time later returned to tell the judge they could not reach a ten


to one majority verdict on the three charges. As a result of the hung


jury on the three charges of attending terrorist training in


Syria, this case will now go back to the Public Prosecution Service. They


will then decide if there should be a retrial on these three charges.


A judge has said it would be premature to hold the trial


of man who's on the run without him being present.


Damien McLaughlin from Ardboe faces charges in connection


with the murder of the prison officer David Black in 2012.


He was due to go on trial next week but hasn't been seen


David Black was killed on his way to work. The following month, Damien


McLaughlin was arrested and charged in connection with the killing. The


40-year-old from Ardboe faces a number of charges, including aiding


and abetting the murder which was claimed by dissident republicans. He


was granted bail in May 2014, but in November last year, he stopped


reporting to police. He has not been seen since and a European warrant


has been issued for his arrest. His trial was due to begin here on


Monday and today, a prosecution barrister made a highly unusual


application that the trial should proceed in the absence of the


accused. He said it appeared that the man had absconded ahead of a


pending trial. Mr Justice Tracy said he was mindful of the fact that


delays in this case are causing distress to the family of the


deceased. The given the ongoing investigations and fact a European


arrest warrant has been issued, it would be premature to proceed with


the trial in the absence of the accused. That decision will be


reviewed again at the end of April, unless that is, Damien McLaughlin is


arrested or hand himself in. You're watching BBC Newsline,


still to come on the programme: We join a cross-border police


operation targeting the theft It's emerged that


a number of companies registered as being dormant


have been claiming tens of thousands of pounds


from the renewable heat scheme. A BBC programme has obtained a list


of all recipients which is currently Our business correspondent


Julian O'Neill joins me. The Nolan programme


obtained this list. Well, this list was obtained by the


Nolan programme and enlist every beneficiary under the scheme and how


much they have been paid. It is the same lift the Department for the


economy has wanted to publish but has been prevented from doing so in


full by a court injunction. Some of the information contained is very


interesting. It shows a small number of dormant or inactive companies


have been getting receipt of tens of thousands of pounds under the


scheme. It also shows that one company received a colossal quart of


?1 million for running just one of boiler over a period of 18 months.


This is many, many, many times what should be possible to claim for one


boiler, even if it was running 24 hours a day.


in the context of what's already known about the RHI scandal?


Bred we already knew the scheme was badly designed and overgenerous and


I think these revelations will add to the sense it was also being


abused. We know that fraud is suspected and the audit office told


us that in a report a number of months ago and I think this will


simply adds to questions about the validity and legitimacy of some


payments. The programme did ask companies for an explanation. They


were not given a one and threatened with legal action should they choose


to name the companies. I think we will get some answers in the months


ahead. Remember, there will not just be a public inquiry, but the


Department for the economy has pledged to have an audit on every


boiler and every single payment. Thank you.


A man's in his 20s is recovering in hospital after he was shot


The attack happened on the Falls Road last night.


Richard Morgan's report begins with the moment a bystander nearby


recorded the gunshots on a mobile phone.


A's believed that was the moment a man was shot in both legs. It was


recorded on the mobile phone of a passer-by who was filming a car


doing handbrake turns on the Main Falls Road. The shooting happened


further down the road at an alley on the opposite side of the jobs and


benefits office. The mobile phone pictures clearly record for macro


shots. -- four shots. The victim was aged in his 20s and police were


called to the scene at about 8:30pm. The man was taken to the nearby


Royal Victoria Hospital where he is said today to be stable. One woman


who lives close by said she ran out of her house when she heard the


gunfire and saw the man being put into an ambulance. The police today


appealed for anyone who may have witnessed the shooting to contact


them. Coming up on the programme before


seven: We find out how a community scheme in Downpatrick is affected


by the Assembly's collapse. The Republic's Foreign Minister has


said it would be counterproductive to try to get a special Brexit deal


for Northern Ireland. Sinn Fein, SDLP and Alliance have


all proposed a special status which would mean Northern Ireland


staying inside the EU Charlie Flanagan has now ruled that


out, but says the Irish Government will work for arrangements


which recognise Northern Here's our Economics


and Business Editor John Campbell. Last June, the UK voted to leave the


EU, the Northern Ireland voted to Remained. We are leaving anyway said


the Prime Minister. Brexit means Brexit. Some part is to special


status deal which would say those stains IDU released the single


market. In October, the Assembly voted against such a deal, but Sinn


Fein, the SDLP and Alliance have not given up. Sinn Fein are raised the


matter yesterday evening. The Republic's Foreign Minister said the


whole idea is counter-productive. The reality is of the unique


circumstances of the Ireland of Ireland, concept of terms like


special status give rise to serious concerns for the EU partners. This


would risk reminding -- undermining the efforts of the Government to


specifically address and mitigate the very real impact is facing us


and the people of Northern Ireland in particular. That means the UK and


Irish governments are now on the same page. The Secretary of State on


Tuesday. To other concepts of Northern Ireland remaining within


the EU when the whole of the UK's leading, well, I do not see how that


works, which is why I have made comments about special status. But


what I does not it is their particular circumstances, very


relevant issues in Ireland that we do need to and will approach in the


negotiations to come. So there will be some attempt to tackle Northern


Ireland's specific issues, short of special status. That was echoed by


Mr Flanagan. This relates to the border, citizenship and


constitutions and human rights. The Government would also advocate the


continuation of a range of EU policy supports to Northern Ireland.


Meanwhile, the Irish Government has confirmed that that part of its


contingency plan it is identifying locations which could be used as


customs posts. There was just one individual queueing up this post


today. Both would like it is dead is quiet. It was misty and murky along


the border today. But Irish Government on Brexit is becoming


much clearer. It wanted the soft as possible Brexit with no physical


borders and no disruption to trade with the UK. But in our faces an


enormous diplomatic task. To persuade its EU partners that that


outcome is in everyone's interest. A cross border PSNI Garda


operation's targeted the theft New figures show a 9%


increase in rural crime and the Ulster Farmers' Union says


criminals are hitting local farmers on an almost daily


basis in some areas. Our reporter in the south east


Gordon Adair went with the police on a raid aimed at disrupting


criminal activity In the morning mist, a long convoy


of police vehicles makes his way into the South Armagh. Inside,


police officers suspect the farm act as a gay before stolen animals being


moved into or out of Northern Ireland and the Republic, across the


border. Garda offices of carrying out a similar operation. We are


targeting this farm in relation to role crime and stolen livestock.


Animals are examined and DNA samples taken. The operation to identify the


animals is still going on. But we have moved and it doesn't sound like


the many animals here. The police or concerned with all aspects of rural


crime, so they are trying to gain access and finding a rather stubborn


door. We've found a view issues in relation to property, but also the


property from the Republic of Ireland. They've established a few


offences in the Republic of Ireland and seized documentation in relation


to the sale of animals in the Republic. But we've also found Ian


Tikes, lying discarded here. They are not registered to this heard and


that will lead us to an investigation on another farm, not


that far away from here. Rural crime is estimated to cost the Northern


Ireland economy between ?3 million and ?4 million annually, with


hundreds of animals going missing every year as well as machinery and


fuel. When operations like this can't disrupt the activity of the


criminals, farming experts agree vigilance remains the key to


reducing rural crime. It's the quarterfinal of the rugby


Schools' Cup this weekend, but many of one team's players


are on a ski trip. Friends School in Lisburn appealed


to the Ulster Branch Schools Committee to reschedule the match,


but that was rejected last night. A 30 nil win over Grosvenor took


this cool took place down lobbying for many years. A quarterfinal. The


big game against Belfast Royal Academy will be played this


Saturday. But there is a problem, and nearly all of the first 15 who


helped get to the match will be on the field. That is because they are


on a ski trip and those return until Saturday night, hours after bland


kick off time which the Ulster brand schools committee which was the


competition says can't be changed. We did not know we would get this


far in the competition, so it's and unforeseen and exceptional event. It


would be so simple if they would only allow us to play the match two


days late. I know that messes up their itinerary a little, but it is


not insurmountable. These are professional rugby players or


grown-ups, they are kids and our hearts are broken. The school said


the ski trip was booked in 2015 and eight form to the committee --


inform the committee they wouldn't be able to play. The school asked


the committee to consider changing the schedule. But the committee said


while it has complete sympathy with the players, the situation could


have been avoided by the school. It says the confirmed dates for this


season was a accommodation are clearly communicated to schools in


figure 2016 by signing the participation agreement last


November, all schools committed to the terms and conditions. Earlier


this week, the committee turned down an appeal from France. -- friends.


The rules and regulations that come with the committee, they are


sticking by it. But a bit of common sense would not go amiss to get this


fixture to go ahead. I've played in cup finals and is lads, that is


their Cup Final. This game on Saturday. It is very unfortunate.


The school has not yet said what it will do, but it is understood coming


early is not an option for the players. If they forfeit the game,


the school may not be able to enter the tournament next year.


Now, as part of our continuing election coverage, we are


profiling the leaders of the five main parties.


Tonight it is the turn of the Alliance Leader Naomi Long.


Our Political Correspondent Stephen Walker joined her on the campaign


The political waters of this part of the world are rarely stirred by the


Alliance Party. It is not the natural battle ground. The divan.


Naomi Long and her canvassing for votes, young and old. This is Naomi


Long's first election as party leader. In the last Assembly


election, the Alliance votes went down, so is this the election when


the alliance make a breakthrough? The party say this is an election


about how we should be governed. Let us vote on the questions that


matter, who can deliver good Government for Northern Ireland, who


can represent all of the people of Northern Ireland fairly and they


will put their interests first is that the party and personal


interests? What about those who say you had a chance of stinking


Government, but you walked away? We walked away from bad Government. I


would do it again after this election. If the only thing on offer


is another divisive carve up of power blocs with no ambition for


Northern Ireland. We will not walk away from governments, because we


will continue an opposition told them to account. So as Naomi Long


faces her first electoral test as leader, how should successfully


measured? If you come back with a low vote share than David Ford, is


that failure? Every election is different, so we have to gauge it in


terms of what happens each time. From our perspective, I'm not trying


to be different from Ford, but to be me. Last year, Alliance won eight


seats. So what will their strength the post-election? Is a shrinking


environment in terms of the overall number of Assembly seats. Eight


seats for Alliance in an Assembly of 90 is much more significant than if


there was a would you accept eight seats now? I'm quite happy to wait


until March the 2nd. Because I have great faith in the people of


Northern Ireland and I think in this case in the election they see an


opportunity to do something new. Convincing voters to try something


different is the alliance mantra. In a fortnight, we will discover if


they succeeded or whether the political landscape remains


unchanged. Stephen Agnew spoke of his party's


manifesto launch in Belfast. They believe Stormont has become a byword


for this function to it by crisis after crisis. Stephen Agnew has


called for a constitutional convention to be established after


the March election. The Green Party is offering 18 candidates across


Northern Ireland to change the face of politics. We want to end the


waste opportunities and give people back their voice. This in the


traditional pot to destroy the Good Friday Agreement we want to reform


and review and revitalise it. The TUV leader Jim Allister has


called for more transparency over the names of those who have received


payments from the controversial The Traditional Unionists have taken


a leaf out of the US President Donald Trump's book,


calling their Assembly election The manifesto says the Renewable


Heat Incentive scheme is just the latest in a series of Stormont


scandals which the party has been It has been incredible incompetence


and I think people are rightly angry about that. They look at the fact it


is still costing ?85,000 a day. They recognise that the three nurses for


year, multiply that by everyday and you can see we would begin to tackle


the great deficit in our health service. But instead, we want to


squander it in the manner which it has been wasted.


There's still a lot of uncertainty over what's going to happen


voluntary and community groups funded by Executive


which didn't agree its budget before it collapsed.


With this financial year coming to an end, they have already warned


that some staff face the prospect of being laid off.


Donna Traynor paid a visit to an initiative in Downpatrick


to see the sort of work that's in jeopardy.


This hub is a shared space. Home to start a music groups under voluntary


service for vulnerable people. But because of that funding limbo, by


the end of next month, this place will be empty. I've been inside to


talk to one of the organisers of a counselling and mentoring service.


And also to a young man who says his life has been turned around because


of the work it does. We deal with people with mental health problems


and social isolation and evictions. We provide them with artist therapy,


group mentoring, one-to-one counselling, suicide intervention


and crisis intervention, all within the one place. We have no Government


funding at all in place and people do their furniture to as and all


sorts of broken down bits and pieces and we put them forward for members


and we tell them let's see what we can make out of this. There are also


restoring confidence and in an open and safe environment where they can


talk about their health problems and addictions and you can speak to all


of them and they will tell you they are alive today because we are here


and this service is here for them. I came here in 2040 with drug and


alcohol problems and I was involved in crime, too. I knew everything bad


in my life came from drugs and I, self into a rut I could not get out


of alone. So when I stepped in through that front door, by


livestock to coming back to normal. -- my life started coming back to


normal and I would go home feeling brilliant, I was going out, doing


things, meeting people and see what addictions I had and I knew there


was a way out. I knew I had a second chance to do something good with my


life instead of it falling apart. How was the change made a difference


to not only you, the job family? I have a life now. My day-to-day life


before was drugs. Now I can get to be make my own decisions and get up,


go to work without them -- without relying on drugs. My family just


can't believe how far I've come in the last couple of years and they


are not always worrying now about me. They are now at ease. They are


so proud of me and the fact I've changed my life about. Two and a


half years ago, I was nowhere and I was nobody.


The Department for the Communities told BBC Newsline that the Social


Enterprise Hub pilot project in Downpatrick and in other


areas had been extended following a positive evaluation.


But that future support has not yet been agreed.


Boxing and negotiations for a third fight between the Belfast man


Carl Frampton and the WBA featherweight super-champion


Leo Santa Cruz may be about to take a new twist.


The Association's president has revealed it may intervene


if the to fighters' camps can't reach a deal.


Gilberto Heysus Mendoza is considering a mandatory order


for the fighters to clash for a third time.


That order could come as early as next week.


Frampton wants to face Santa Cruz in Belfast but the champion's team


After a promising start, it is now pretty miserable. But the weekend is


shaping up to be fairly dry. Especially during daylight hours.


Here are the last few frames of our local weather radar. The rain is


becoming lighter. Heavy bursts should ease off. There will still be


dampness around, that any heavy rain will have edged away. Mist and low


cloud by the end of the night. But it is mild. To begin on Friday, it


will be dull and damp. It should improve. A good part of the day is


fairly dry. Dull, drizzly weather initially. Mist and low cloud, foggy


and murky, be brightening up as the morning goes on. Not promising lots


of summer, but skies will lift a bit. Lunchtime temperature should be


11-12 . Not too breezy. A dry 11-12 . Not too breezy. A dry


Later in the day, we are expecting a few showers to drift up from the


south. A little dampness by the end of the day and wetter tomorrow


night. The breeze picks up. Most rain eases off again toward the end


of the night. As far as the weekend goes, we have early rain on Saturday


and a bit of rain late on Sunday. In between go, dry. Temperatures above


average. That rain moves away on Saturday morning. Skies brightened


up. Much of the day is dry, reasonably bright. If you're going


to the match on Saturday afternoon, it will be warmer than it was. 'S


match and it should be dry. Temperatures of 12 degrees. Sunday,


dampness first thing. Otherwise, the wet weather holds off till later the


day. We will keep the mild weather pattern into the start of next week.


Fairly dry conditions this weekend. Mild, too. Our main story is a game:


a Londonderry man who went to Syria has been found not guilty on three


terrorism charges. The jury could not reach a verdict on three other


charges. The trial of this man in connection with the murder of a


prison officer will not go ahead as planned next week, as he is on the


run. Our late summary


is at half past ten. You can also keep in contact with us


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