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Man accused of cultivating 31 cannabis plants to face Crown Court

He was released on continuing bail to appear before Newry Crown Court next month

Armagh Courthouse

A man who is accused of cultivating 31 cannabis plants will face Crown Court proceedings in the New Year.

The 33-year-old appeared before Armagh Magistrates’ Court, sitting at Newry for the purposes of a preliminary enquiry (PE), the legal process during which a case is referred to the higher court.

Juris Babahins, of Belmount in Dungannon, is charged with cultivating cannabis, possession of a Class B drug with intent to supply, dishonestly causing electricity to be diverted and criminal damage.

As the charges were read, court heard between April 6 and July 7, the defendant is alleged to have cultivated 31 cannabis plants.

During this same period, Babahins is also accused of dishonestly using , or causing to be diverted, a quantity of electricity, whilst the criminal damage is alleged to have been caused to a dwelling between February 9 and July 7.

Appearing via videolink from his solicitor’s office, Babahins made no objection to the holding of a preliminary enquiry.

Prosecution submitted that based on the papers before the court there was a prima facie case to answer.

Defence barrister Tom McCreanor made no contrary submissions.

Deputy District Judge Des Perry, satisfied there was a prima facie case to answer, released the defendant on continuing bail to appear before Newry Crown Court on January 20 for arraignment.

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