High court grants leave to judicially review Secretary of State decision to refuse application to renew firearms certificate.
Northern Ireland estate agent Philip Johnston relinquished his firearms certificate in 2005 following his arrest during an investigation into alleged money laundering involving the murdered UDA boss Jim Gray.
All charges against Mr Johnston were subsequently dropped but an application to renew his firearms certificate, which he had previously held for 20 years, was refused by both the Chief Constable and the Secretary of State, on the grounds of an alleged association with loyalist paramilitaries.
In a high court application for leave to judicially review that decision, Mr O’Donoghue, Counsel for Mr Johnson, argued that the decision to deny his client a firearms certificate was irrational and his client had only known Jim Gray through renting him an apartment.
Mr Justice Treacy ruled that Mr Johnston's legal team had established an arguable case and granted Mr Johnston leave to seek a judicial review of the decision.
The hearing has been listed for February 2013 and we await the outcome with interest.