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Finn fails in bid for anonymity

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Finn fails in bid for anonymity thumbnailNathan Finn arriving at Armagh court on Friday

IT has been confirmed a second man is facing charges in relation to the death of Armagh teenager Lesley-Ann McCarragher, who was killed in a hit-and-run incident last year at Milford.

And in his first appearance at court since being identified on Friday, the teenage accused, Nathan Finn who is already charged and remanded on bail, sought anonymity allegedly grounded on a death threat against him.

A defence solicitor made an unsuccessful attempt to suppress Finn's identity, after remonstrating with press claiming they should not have been in court or reporting on the case, which was incorrect.

Last week, eighteen-year old Finn of Keady Road, Armagh was identified for the first time after reporting restrictions no longer applied. He is accused of causing Lesley-Ann's death on April 9, 2016, by dangerous driving, and whilst having no licence or insurance.

Having first appeared in court as a youth he was granted bail and then remanded in custody for a time at his own request.

He was later readmitted to bail, but throughout these proceedings he could not be named due to his age.

However having turned 18 he is now classed as an adult.

Court papers show him as remanded on very strict bail and facing committal proceedings to formally transfer his case to trial.

AT the time of his first appearance in court, police said they were searching for another person whom they believed Finn may have been racing on the Monaghan Road, Armagh.

A witness said they observed two vehicles - one being a white Saab allegedly driven by Finn - which appeared to be racing each other. This car undertook another vehicle on the hard-shoulder and struck nineteen- year old Lesley-Ann as she was jogging.

She was airlifted to hospital but passed away from her injuries.

It has now been confirmed a second person is also to be prosecuted with causing Lesley-Ann's death by dangerous driving.

Finn's case was listed for a committal hearing but this has now been adjourned to Armagh Magistrates Court on August 15 to link with the second accused.

A defence solicitor sought to have Finn granted anonymity, claiming a death threat has been issued. However the judge refused stating the identity is already in the public domain.

The application did not appear to be supported by PSNI, who would have been required to provide evidence of a live threat in an anonymity bid.

Following this, Finn left by a side entrance avoiding press after the judge rejected the application to suppress his identity.

Members of Lesley-Ann's family attended court for the hearing and quietly left after learning the case is adjourned. It was the first time they have seen Finn or attended a court hearing.

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