A teenager from Northern Ireland has indicated a guilty plea to making social media death threats against New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Matthew Burns, 19, of Dundalk Rd, Newtownhamilton in County Armagh appeared before Newry Magistrates Court on October 2.

The accused's mother also attended the Newry magistrates court in support of her son, who wore a blue suit and glasses.

Ardern was targeted by Burns after she spoke out following the mass shootings at Al Noor mosque and Linwood Islamic Centre in Christchurch.

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A Twitter message to Ardern was made directly after the terrorist attack.

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The court heard that a photo of a gun silencer was sent with the message "you're next".

Burns was further charged with making similar threats to the Mayor of London, Sadiq Kahn.

The teenager was arrested on April 11 and taken to Banbridge police station for questioning.

County Armagh's Matthew Burns, 19, has indicated a guilty plea after a threat was made against Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Twitter. Photo / Donal McMahon - DMacNews
County Armagh's Matthew Burns, 19, has indicated a guilty plea after a threat was made against Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Twitter. Photo / Donal McMahon - DMacNews

The dates of offending of "menacing character" messages on Twitter and Facebook have now been consolidated to five charges from an initial 21, with dates from June 14, 2018 to March 20, 2019.

Burns is also further charged with making similar threats to Kahn.

Defence barrister Kevin Magill said it would "simplify the matter" with a plea of guilty to the new amalgamation of the offences.

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"There will be a plea to all five charges," the defence said. "There is now a psychiatric report available to probation to assist in making any reports required."

During a police interview Burns stated he had far right political leanings and had negative sentiments towards minorities, Muslims and the LGBTQ community.

Volumes of similar posts towards minorities have been under investigation by the Northern Ireland police service's cyber unit.

District Judge Eamonn King ordered a pre-sentence report into the accused's offending. The judge ordered all reports be disclosed to the probation services to compile the report.

The case was adjourned to November, when sentencing is expected.

Burns was released on continuing bail and left the court with signals made to the media.

- DMacNews