Wednesday 7 December 2016

Three appear in front of Special Criminal Court charged with IRA membership

Ruaidhrí Giblin

Published 16/05/2015 | 10:43

Britain's Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles
Britain's Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles

Three men have appeared before a Saturday sitting of the non-jury Special Criminal Court charged with membership of the IRA among other offences.

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The men had been arrested by members of the Special Detective Unit as part of an ongoing investigation into the activities of dissident republicans.

Séamus McGrane (60), of Little Road, Domiskin, Co Louth, was charged with membership of an unlawful organisation styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hÉireann otherwise the IRA within the State between December 23 2009 and May 13 2015.

Mr McGrane was also charged with directing the activities of an unlawful organisation styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hEireann, otherwise the IRA, in respect of which a suppression order had been made, within the State on dates between December 23 2009 and May 13 2015 inclusive.

Detective Sergeant Padraig Boyce, of the Special Detective Unit, told the three-judge court that he arrested Mr McGrane at Londonbridge Road, Dublin 4 on Friday May 15 2015.

Det Sgt Boyce said Mr McGrane made no reply when the charges were read to him.

When asked whether Mr McGrane was present in court, Det Sgt Boyce raised his hand and said he was the man in the black top in the dock.

Mr Justice Paul Butler, presiding at the non-jury court with Judge Alison Lindsay and Judge Flann Brennan, remanded Mr McGrane in custody until Wednesday May 20 next.

Donal O Coisdealbha (23), of Abbeyfield, Killester Dublin 15, was charged with membership of an unlawful organisation styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hÉireann otherwise the IRA within the State on May 13 2015.

Mr O Coisdealbha was also charged with possession of a component part of an improvised explosive device namely a time and power unit also known as a TPU at “the personal storage locker under the control of Donal O Coisdealbha at Protector Life Sciences, National University of Ireland Maynooth, Co Kildare” under such circumstances as to give rise to a reasonable suspicion that he had not got it in his possession for a lawful purpose on May 13 2015.

Det Sgt Finbarr Hayes told the non-jury court that he arrested Mr O Coisdealbha at Irishtown Road, and he had nothing to say in reply to the charges.

When asked whether Mr O Coisdealbha was in court, Det Sgt Hayes said he was the gentleman in the dock wearing the red t-shirt.

He was remanded in custody until Wednesday May 20 next.

Solicitor Kieran Conway, for Mr O Coisdealbha, told the court that he will be applying for bail on the next occasion.

Separately, Dylan Cahill (22), of Lower Irishtown, Clonmel, Co Tipperary, was charged with membership of an unlawful organisation styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hEireann, otherwise the IRA within the State on May 13 2015.

Mr Cahill was also charged with possession of .380 calibre Colt semi-automatic pistol and with possession of four rounds of .380 calibre ammunition, in circumstances as to give rise to a reasonable inference that he had not got the items in his possession for a lawful purpose at Sradrine, Glefame, Co Leitrim on May 13 2015.

Furthermore, Mr Cahill was charged with possession of two Improvised Explosive Devices commonly known as pipe bombs at Sradrine, Glenfame, County Leitrim on May 13 2015.

Detective Garda Mark Benson told the three judge court that he arrested Mr Cahill at Cluneen, Manorhamilton, Co Leitrim on Friday May 15 2015 and he made no reply to the charges.

When an application for bail on Tuesday next was proposed on Mr Cahill's behalf, solicitor Liam Mulholland, for the Director of Public Prosecutions, said Tuesday next was a bad day for the gardaí because of the visit of Prince Charles to the State.

"The gardaí are extremely busy that day," Mr Mulholland said.

Mr Cahill was remanded in custody until June 9 next with liberty to apply for bail before that date.

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