Northern Ireland

Seven people charged over Belfast City Hall sham marriage

John Robert Nicholl and Edward Nicholl who are charged in connection with a sham marriage at Belfast City Hall
Image caption John Robert Nicholl and Edward Nicholl appeared in court in connection with a sham marriage at Belfast City Hall

Seven people, including a trainee solicitor from Northern Ireland, have appeared in court on immigration offences linked to an alleged sham marriage at Belfast City Hall.

Solicitor John Irwin, faces charges in breach of immigration laws.

Michelle Lyons, a trainee solicitor, faces eight charges, including facilitating a sham marriage

Edward Nicholl and John Robert Nicholl are accused of assisting in the sham marriage in August 2011.

Mr Irwin, from Kesh Road, Lisburn is charged with completing driving licence applications for non-EU citizens in breach of the immigration laws.

Ms Lyons, from Main Street, Castlerock, is charged with facilitating a sham marriage and completing a business transfer.

She is also charged with making fraudulent driving licence applications for foreign nationals for personal gain.

Edward Nicholl, 59, from Glebe Avenue, Coleraine, County Londonderry, is charged with participating in a sham marriage by acting as a witness.

John Robert Nicholl, 55, from Sea Road, Castlerock, County Londonderry, is charged with participating in a sham marriage by acting as a groom.

Two Chinese women and a man were also charged in connection with breaches of the immigration laws.

All were remanded on bail to Belfast Crown Court.

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