Two men have been remanded in custody on charges relating to suspicious activity in Armagh on Saturday morning, one of whom jumped from a vehicle flagged down by police and fled on foot.
Appearing by video-link from police custody were Anghel Toader and Ion Dobrin, both aged 33 and with addresses given simply as Dublin, are jointly accused of handling stolen properly, going equipped for theft and attempted theft of a Citroen Berlingo valued £12,000.
Toader is further charged with having no driving licence or insurance.
A detective constable told Newry Magistrates’ Court the charges against each accused could be connected.
She explained on the morning November 20 police were tasked to search for an individual seen acting suspiciously in the Loughgall Road area of Armagh.
He was said to be “loitering” around vehicles in the grounds of a residential property.
A short time later a silver Ford Transit van in a state of disrepair, was spotted being driven erratically through Armagh city.
When signalled to stop, a male front seat passenger exited the vehicle and fled on foot.
Police gave chase but lost sight of him around the Orange Hall on Mall East.
The person driving was Toader and on searching the vehicle, officers discovered an angle grinder, two catalytic converters and various other tools.
It transpired the vehicle was uninsured and Toader, “was unable to furnish police with the details of the male who made off, claiming he didn’t know his name nor explain his relationship to him”.
He was also unable to produce his driving licence, or give a reasonable account for the equipment in the van.
Toader was arrested and a few hours later police located Dobrin hiding in an outbuilding at Mall East. He too was arrested.
The detective told the court neither accused have provided a suitable bail address and one claimed to have only been in the vicinity for three days and intends to return to his native country.
A defence lawyer appearing for both accused confirmed no bail application would be made at this stage.
District Judge Eamon King remanded the pair in custody to appear by video-link at Armagh Magistrates’ Court on 15 December.