Stone gets 16 years for Stormont raid

Loyalist paramilitary hitman Michael Stone will serve 16 years in jail for his one-man raid on Stormont two years ago.

Stone breached security at the Northern Ireland parliament building on November 24th 2006 before attempting to set off an improvised explosive device.

He was convicted last month at Belfast crown court of seven charges, including two of attempted murder and one of possession of articles for terrorist purposes.

The court had heard he had three knives, a hatchet and a garrotte on his person along with a flight bag containing flammable liquids and fireworks which he unsuccessfully attempted to light.

Stone had claimed his intervention was not an attack but staged performance art, a defence rejected by Mr Justice Deeney as “wholly undeserving of belief”.

The 53-year-old former Ulster Defence Association (UDA) member had served 11 years in jail for six murders and five attempted murders before being freed on licence as part of the Good Friday agreement.

He now faces the revocation of this licence which could result in him facing an additional 30 years in prison.