THUGS who hijacked a Dublin-bound train doused passengers' bags in petrol in an attempt to commit "mass murder".
A community worker was hailed a hero today after confronting rioters who attacked the Irish Rail train in Lurgan on July 12.
The full horror of the incident only emerged today as Iarnrod Eireann confirmed to the Herald that some pieces of luggage were soaked in an attempt to burn up to 60 people alive.
Footage showing bags being thrown off the train initially led investigators to believe they were being stolen.
However, it has now emerged that a community worker risked his life to remove the petrol-soaked bags, most of which belonged to boy scouts.
"Some were doused and some were burned," explained an Irish Rail spokesperson.
"They were trying to set the driver's cab on fire and they also poured petrol on to some of the heavy bags and luggage."
Steven Moutrey DUP said; "But for the work of a community worker on Monday there could have been mass murder."
Today, a hero community worker told how he confronted the vicious mob and tried to alert those on board the train to the danger. The man, identified only as John, told UTV how he confronted a masked man as rioters were intent on killing all 55 passengers.
"I told him that there were women and children on the train, he said 'f them, let them burn'," he recalled. Having confronted the masked man, who had a five galloon drum in his hand, John got into the driver's carriage.
"I move from there through the carriage and started to shout at the people because somebody shouted to me that they were going to set the train on fire. They just couldn't comprehend what was going on."
Irish Rail said that an investigation is ongoing but the spokesperson was unaware of the community worker's heroic actions.