Two brothers who tried to intimidate woman from her Lurgan home told by judge they face jail

Adrian Douglas and Alister Douglas have been told they face jail terms

Two Co Armagh brothers who admitted intimidating a woman from her home have been warned to “make arrangements” for their children and partners as “it is highly likely that they will be going to prison".

Adrian Douglas, 34, and his older brother Alister Douglas, 37, were due to be sentenced at Craigavon Crown Court on Friday but their defence barristers applied for the case to be adjourned as they seek further reports.

As their victim Danielle Skelton watched proceedings online, defence counsellors Patrick Taggart and Conor Coulter told the court they would be seeking psychiatric reports and evidence from social services regarding the effect on their immediate families should the pair be jailed over the sectarian incident.

Last January Adrian Douglas admitted intimidation while Alister Douglas admitted aiding and abetting his brother in the intimidation on 30 April last year.

The Lurgan brothers also admitted a charge of attempting to cause criminal damage to a front door belonging to Ms Skelton on the same date.

Following the pairs’ admissions, prosecuting counsel Nicola Auret asked for a further charge of trying to damager Ms Skelton’s Ring doorbell to be left on the books, an application which was granted by Judge Patrick Lynch KC.

In relation to the intimidation charge the Lurgan brothers, from Carrick Drive and Charles Baron Gardens respectively, admitted that they “unlawfully caused by force, threats or menaces, or in some other way another person namely Danielle Skelton to leave a place where she was for the time being resident or in occupation.”

It is the footage recorded from the ring doorbell that has landed the two brothers in court after they were recorded shouting sectarian abuse such as "get this fenian out” and “the taigs in" as well as hammering and kicking the door.

On spotting the doorbell camera, one of them tried to prise it off the door frame and with the video posted online, the footage has been viewed thousands of times and has evoked public revulsion and condemnation from all quarters.

In court on Friday prosecuting counsel Nicola Auret emphasised there has already been “a significant interval” since the guilty pleas were entered “so one wonders why this material hasn’t been gathered before now.”

Adjourning the case to 21 March for mention, Judge Patrick Lynch KC said he would set a new date for the plea and sentence at that stage.

He warned however that while their personal circumstances will be taken into account, “they are not determinative” of the ultimate outcome.

“Your clients better make appropriate arrangements,” the judge told the defence teams, “it’s highly likely that they will be going to prison.”

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