Stewart Dickson MLA said: “I am disappointed that Nelson McCausland has sought to intervene in this case. He must respect the rule of law.
“It is not up to politicians to determine the level of punishment for specific court cases, that should be the sole responsibility of our judges. Mr McCausland should not seek to undermine the authority or independence of the judiciary.
“As an Executive Minister, he took a pledge of office that he would seek to uphold the rule of law and support the courts. I believe his comments have come dangerously close to breaking that pledge.”