Case against Pastor McConnell to proceed
The case against Pastor James McConnell, who is accused of offences linked to comments about Islam, is to proceed.
by Chris Chambers and Judith Hill
October 1, 2015
Speaking outside Belfast Magistrates' Court on Thursday, the 78-year-old told a crowd of singing supporters he is "not afraid to go to jail".
The trial has been set for 14 December.
Pastor McConnell, from the Shore Road in Newtownabbey, is being prosecuted under the 2003 Communications Act.
It follows comments made from the pulpit of Whitewell Metropolitan Chapel during a sermon last year, which was streamed online.
The pastor has pleaded not guilty.
His defence team said they are disappointed with how the Public Prosecution Service has handled this but the barrister for the PPS said that a proper review has been carried out.
It also emerged that they will make an application to call BBC presenter Stephen Nolan to appear as a witness.
Pastor McConnell emerged from the court to the cheers of supporters after learning he is to stand trial.
He joked about getting his Christmas dinner in jail and said that this is a freedom of expression issue and they're on the winning side.
The trial is expected to last three days.
Related Topics: Free Speech Legal Case
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