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Gardai win time to probe rocket attack suspects

GARDAI have been given the weekend to quiz three suspects about the seizure of rocket launchers and cocaine in a foiled gangland "spectacular".

A judge has agreed to extend the time officers investigating the planned rocket attack can detain the three men at Clondalkin Garda Station.

Detectives brought the three suspects before Judge Hugh O'Donnell at a sitting of Dublin District Court.

Chief Superintendent Padraig Kennedy applied for the 72-hour extension under the Drug Trafficking Act, setting out in detail the scope of the massive investigation underway since Thursday's raid.

Sources believe that "Fat" Freddie Thompson's gang planned to lure a rival crew to a house for talks and then blow them up with rocket-propelled grenades.

As has already been reported, they were found along with nine kilos of cocaine in a raid on lock-up in Straffan, Kildare following the seizure of another kilo of cocaine at the Naas Road, near Rathcoole, Co Dublin, when the organised crime unit stopped two cars and detained four men.

The rocket launchers, one of which has been identified as a Russian-made RPG-22, are notoriously difficult to fire but would be very effective if used on a house.

Garda intelligence reports in the weeks leading up to the seizure of two rocket launchers signalled a major plot to eliminate the remnants of a Crumlin drugs outfit whose leader is currently in prison.

Sixteen men have been murdered to date in the bloody drugs war between the gangs.

Gardai believe the RPGs were either bought from dissident republicans or brought into the country as part of a cocaine assignment.