Wednesday 21 March 2018

Three men appear before Special Criminal Court on explosives and IRA membership charges

Three men have appeared before the Special Criminal Court this morning charged with explosives and IRA membership offences.

Gareth Mulley (44), William Burns (38) and David Gallagher (37) were arrested by members of the Special Detective Unit on Sunday evening in Kilcurry Co Louth as part of ongoing investigations into the activities of dissident republicans.

Mr Burns, of Kerrera St, Ardoyne, Belfast, Co Antrim and his two co-accused are charged with the unlawful possession of the explosive substances PETN and RDX, an adapted 50 litre beer keg, 50 kg of ammonium nitrate homemade explosive, an improvised detonation cord, an improvised steel booster tube and an improvised time and power unit at Kilcurry Church on May 25, 2014.

Mr Mulley, of Aisling Park, Dundalk and Mr Gallagher, of Marley Court, Drogheda, Co Louth are also charged with membership of an unlawful organisation within the State, namely Oglaigh na hEireann, otherwise the Irish Republican Army, otherwise the IRA on the same date.

Members of the Special Detective Unit this morning gave evidence to the non-jury court of the arrest and caution of the three men.

Detective Sergeant Padraig Boyce told State Solicitor Mr Michael O’Donovan that he arrested Mr Mulley shortly after 7pm on Tuesday evening on Father Connolly Way in Drogheda, while Det Gda Kieran Hobbs said he arrested David Gallagher on the doorstep of Ashbourne Garda Station at the same time yesterday evening.

Detective Garda Padraig McManus told Mr O’Donovan that he arrested William Burns on Carrick Road in Dundalk yesterday evening.

He said that when he again met Mr Burns in the confines of the court this morning and explained the charge to him in ordinary language, the accused man replied: “I didn’t know it was explosives”.

There was no application for bail on behalf of any of the accused men, however legal aid was granted to Mr Mulley after an application by his Solicitor David Thompson.

Presiding judge Ms Justice Iseult O’Malley remanded the three men in custody to appear before the court via video link on June 4, with liberty to apply in the interim should a production order be sought for the purposes of a bail application.

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