Two Newtownabbey men were in court today (Saturday) accused of trying to murder one-time leading loyalist Darren Moore.
Appearing at Belfast Magistrates Court, 44-year-old David John Gibson and David Rush (34) spoke only to confirm they understood the charges against them.
Gibson, from Milewater Drive and Rush, from Ballyvesey Green, are jointly accused of trying to murder Darren Moore on 15 March this year.
Rush is further accused of possessing a weapon, namely a wooden baton, with intent to commit an indictable offence on the same date.
The charges arise after a ten strong gang launched what has been described as a “vicious” beating on Moore as he sat drinking in McConnell’s Bar in Doagh.
Earlier this week, 27-year-old Aaron Cahoon, of Fairhill Gardens in Newtownabbey, was charged with the alleged murder bid and possessing a hammer as a weapon with intent to commit an indictable offence.
Cahoon, who denies the charges, was arrested along with six other men and five were later released on police bail.
During an unsuccessful bail application for Cahoon, the court heard that Moore, who is in his 40’s, suffered multiple head fractures, facial lacerations and a puncture wound to his stomach during the “vicious” beating.
A police officer told the court that Moore has been living under a paramilitary death threat for some time and he, along with police who viewed CCTV footage of the incident, have named Cahoon as being part of the ten-man team.
In court today (sat) Detective Constable Finlay said she believed she could connect Rush and Gibson to the charges and as no bail applications were lodged, District Judge Bernie Kelly remanded them into custody until this Thursday 23 March when it was expected they will ask to be freed.