indecent images | 

Famous Co Antrim guitar-maker appears in court accused of taking 'upskirt' photos

Stephen McIlwrath (62) was also charged with a dozen offences relating to indecent images of children
Stephen McIlwrath

Stephen McIlwrath

Paul Higgins

A Co. Antrim guitar maker whose products have been used by world famous music stars appeared in court today accused of upskirting.

Appearing at Lisburn Magistrates Court by videolink from the offices of Madden and Finucane solicitors, 62-year-old Stephen McIlwrath was charged with outraging public decency “by recording upskirt images of an unknown female” in a date unknown between 1 July 2016 and 30 May 2018.

In addition McIlwrath, from Breton View in Lisburn and who is the founder and managing director of Avalon Guitars in Ards, was also charged with a dozen offences relating to indecent images of children including two counts of possessing 176 indecent images, nine of making indecent images and one of possessing indecent images “with a view” to either show or distribute them to others.

While none of the facts surrounding the allegations were opened in court, McIlwrath confirmed he was aware of and understood the charges while a prosecuting lawyer submitted there was a case to answer against him.

Defence counsel Damien Halleron confirmed he had no contrary submissions and District Judge Alan White said he was satisfied there was a Prima Facie case.

The court clerk told McIlwrath that although not obliged to he had the right to comment on the charges and to call evidence to the court on his own behalf but he declined the opportunity.

Freeing McIlwrath on £500 bail with conditions that he resides at home and has no unsupervised contact with children, DJ White returned the case to Craigavon Crown Court for trial, scheduling the arraignment to be heard on 16 September.


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