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Man accused of blackmail and disclosing private sexual image to face Crown Court

He was released on his own bail of £1,000 to appear before Newry Crown Court on September

A Newtownhamilton man who is accused of blackmailing a female and demanding indecent images and disclosing a sexual image without her consent is to face Crown Court proceedings later this year.

The 20-year-old appeared at Newry Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday for the purposes of a preliminary enquiry (PE), the legal process during which a case is referred to the higher court.

Gareth Meaklim, of Barkers Road, is charged with blackmail and disclosing a private sexual photograph or film of an individual without their consent.

As the charges were read, it was heard that both offences are alleged to have occurred between January 27 and February 14, of last year.

The defendant is accused of with a view to gain for himself or another or with intent to cause loss to another made an unwarranted demand of indecent photographs from a named female.

Meaklim is further alleged to have disclosed a private sexual photograph or film of the same female to another without her consent.

Appearing in court, the defendant 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 counsel made no contrary submissions.

District Judge Eamonn King said that he was satisfied there was a prima facie case to answer.

Meaklim was released on his own bail of £1,000 to appear before Newry Crown Court on September 9 for arraignment.

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