Grimsby man in court over Facebook 'riot' messages

A father-of-two accused of posting messages on Facebook encouraging rioting remains in custody after an appeal against a decision to bail him.

Martin Hartshorn, of McCauley Street, Grimsby, is charged under the Serious Crime Act with encouraging or assisting the commission of violent disorder.

The 21-year-old was granted bail after appearing before Grimsby magistrates.

However, the decision was immediately appealed against by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

He will remain in custody until a judge decides later this week whether he can be released on bail.

Unemployed Mr Hartshorn is alleged to have posted messages on Facebook on 9 August as rioting broke out in a number of English cities.

He said he did not want to indicate a plea during his court appearance.

Mr Hartshorn's solicitor Geoff Ellis applied for bail and chairman of the bench David Stenton said this would be granted with a number of conditions including a curfew and a ban on using any electronic communication device, except a landline telephone.

But Martin Haworth, prosecuting, immediately lodged an appeal and served the papers on Mr Hartshorn in the dock.

Mr Haworth said this meant the defendant would have to be kept in custody until a judge decided on his remand status at Grimsby Crown Court. He said this would have to happen within the next 48 hours.

Mr Hartshorn was told he would next appear before magistrates on 28 September for a committal hearing.

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