Health Minister Robin Swann will have to testify against a man accused of making repeated threats against him, a court was told on Tuesday.
Appearing at Newtownards Magistrates' Court, 45-year-old William Herbert Hawkes entered not guilty pleas to all of the charges against him.
As a result of the denials, Hawkes' solicitor confirmed that Mr Swann will have to give evidence.
Hawkes, from Ardmillan Crescent in Ards, faces charges across two bills of indictment, all of them directed at the UUP MLA.
The Co Down man faces two counts of making a threat to kill Mr Swann and one charge of sending menacing tweets to the health minister on 15 November last year while on a second set of charges, alleged to have been committed on 22 and 23 January this year, Hawkes faces four counts of making a threat to kill and one of sending an offensive or menacing message.
Previous courts have heard claims that tweets were sent to the minister labelling him a “monster, a liar and a killer".
“He is deliberately killing elderly people,” Hawkes is alleged to have tweeted in one incident, “robin swann is a killer.”
In the November case, Hawkes is alleged to have tweeted threats where he labelled the health minister as “corrupt,” and asked him to “explain his master plan.”
He also allegedly threatened that “I would like to kill the NI Health Minister,” claiming that he has a car and is going to “pay him a visit".
In court on Tuesday, Hawkes was freed on continuing bail and adjourned the case to 20 September to fix a date for the contest.
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