Accused of stealing bibles from St Patrick’s Church

Court image.
Court image.

A man has appeared in court in Coleraine accused of stealing bibles and hymn books from two churches in the north coast area.

Darren Stewart (32), whose address was given as Chapel Square in Coleraine, is alleged to have stolen bibles and hymn books from St Patrick’s Church of Ireland in Coleraine and also Glenmanus Reformed Presbyterian Church in Portrush.

The alleged thefts are said to have occurred between December 12 last year and January 10 this year.

The defendant is also accused of taking prayer books, choir robes and keys belonging to St Patrick’s between the same dates. Stewart is also alleged to have entered St Patrick’s as a trespasser with intent to steal on January 10.

In total he faces five charges - three of theft, one of burglary and one of burglary with intent to steal.

He appeared in the dock at Coleraine Magistrates Court on Monday and confirmed he understood the charges.

A police officer said she believed she could connect him to the charges.

A prosecutor said the full file in the case was not yet ready and asked for the case to be adjourned.

District Judge Liam McNally released the accused on his own bail of £300 and also banned him from entering the grounds of both churches.

The case was adjourned until later this month.