Northern Ireland news

13-year-old child and woman (19) among eight people charged with rioting during week of loyalist violence

PSNI officers in riot gear push flag protestors back into the Sandy Row area of south Belfast. Picture by Arthur Allison/Pacemaker

A 13-YEAR-OLD boy and a young woman aged 19 are among eight people charged with rioting during a week of loyalist violence across Belfast and its northern outskirts.

The teenage boy is due to appear along with two other teenagers, aged 14 and 17, who will appear on the same charges at Belfast Youth Court on Friday April 30 after unrest in Sandy Row in the south of the city last Friday.

A 19-year-old woman and three men aged 25, 21 and 18, were also charged with riot in relation to the same violence that evening.

Video footage emerged of a woman running towards police lines before throwing a heavy piece of masonry.

She was wrestled to the ground by officers in riot gear.

Police could not confirm yesterday if the woman in the video, which was shared widely on social media, was the same person charged in connection with events on Sandy Row.

All four are due to appear at Belfast Magistrates Court on April 30, with their charges also referred for review to the Public Prosecution Service.

Last Friday's trouble in the loyalist Sandy Row area, when petrol bombs, bricks and bottles were thrown at police during sustained disorder, sparked a week of rioting across the city.

Fifteen officers were injured that night.

A 47-year-old man was charged with riot, and throwing petrol bomb by detectives investigating disorder in the O'Neill Road / Cloughfern area of Newtownabbey the following night.

He is due to appear at Belfast Magistrates Court on Monday April 26, with the charges to be reviewed by the PPS.

The PSNI meanwhile would not confirm claims on social media that officers had been visiting hospitals to interview anyone with "burns and riot-related injuries".

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Northern Ireland news