Belfast Telegraph

IRA bomb trial starts

10 November 2004

An alleged dissident republican went on trial today accused of car bombing Stewartstown police station four years ago.

Belfast Crown Court heard that after a stolen car was driven up to the gates at the PSNI station on July 8, 2000, two men got out and ran to a waiting getaway car, shouting warnings at passers-by for them to move from the area.

In the dock denying charges of causing an explosion, possessing an explosive substance and membership of the Real IRA, is 26-year-old Brendan Gerard O'Connor, from Cavanoneill Road in Pomeroy.

Prosecution QC Jackie Orr told the court that O'Connor could allegedly be linked to the getaway car by a DNA profile found on gloves nearby the abandoned and burnt out motor.

She said both men were described as wearing white dust masks and dark clothing with one wearing a dark baseball cap.

She told trial judge Mr Justice Weatherup that the man wearing the cap got into a waiting red car which sped off along the Sherrygrim Road.

The lawyer claimed that evidence in the case will show that the car, a Volkswagen Passat, was found crashed and on fire a short distance along the same road.

The lawyer said the car bomb exploded at around 12.50am on Sunday July 9, as officers were still evacuating the scene, causing minor injuries to a number of officers and civilians.

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