Sunday 20 October 2019

Men charged with conspiracy to possess explosive substance, gun and ammunition to go on trial in Tipperary

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TWO men will go on trial tomorrow in Tipperary on charges of conspiracy to possess an explosive substance, a firearm and ammunition.

Thomas Bates (51) and Nigel Gartland (34) both also face a charge of possession of ammunition likely for an unlawful purpose.

Bates of Abbey Street, Cahir, Co Tipperary and Gartland of Knocklofty Heights, Clonmel, Co Tipperary appeared before Judge Tom Teehan at Tipperary Circuit Criminal Court.

Their trial was scheduled to open today but Judge Teehan sent their jury panel home after indicating it would not now be proceeding before Tuesday.

"I very much regret that you have been kept waiting....(but) it has become apparent that the case cannot commence today," he said.

The adjournment took place after lengthy legal discussion between the State and the two defence teams.

Judge Teehan indicated that a jury would be empanelled tomorrow with the arraignment of both defendants.

Each defendant faces a total of four charges.

The charges include three counts of conspiracy to possess a firearm, ammunition and an explosive substance, in circumstances that would give rise to an inference that it was not for a lawful purpose, between October 24 and November 10 2017.

The three charges are brought contrary to the Firearms Act, 1964 and the Criminal Justice Act, 2006.

Both men are also charged with possession or control of six rounds of .38 calibre Super Comp ammunition at Abbey Street in Cahir with an inference it was not for a lawful purpose.

The possession or control is alleged to have occurred on November 10 in the south Tipperary town.

That charge is brought contrary to the Firearms Act, 1964 and the Criminal Justice Act, 2007.

Neither defendant spoke during the hearing.

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