Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Man (20) is charged over arms find

Army bomb experts working on the Northland Road on Saturday morning following the ramming of cars by police hours earlier
Army bomb experts working on the Northland Road on Saturday morning following the ramming of cars by police hours earlier

A man is due in court today charged in connection with an arms find in Londonderry.

The 20-year-old will appear in connection with the discovery of weapons, ammunition and explosives in the city on Friday night.

Two cars were stopped by police in what a PSNI officer described as "a security operation targeting dissident republican activity".

The cars were travelling on the outward-bound lane of Northland Road when they were stopped between Foyle Springs and Ballymagroarty. Guns, ammunition and a suspected pipe-bomb were recovered. Witnesses told the BBC how they saw two men being laid on the ground, then being dressed in forensic overalls.

An Army bomb disposal officer was deployed to the scene and nearby industrial premises and houses were evacuated. Residents were not allowed back into their homes until 5.30am the next day.

Various items including a vehicle were seized in follow-up searches in the area.

Yesterday police confirmed a 20-year-old man arrested at the scene faces charges of possession of firearms with intent to endanger life, possession of explosives with intent to endanger life and possession of articles for terrorist purposes.

A 54-year-old man also arrested in the operation remains in custody.

Secretary of State Theresa Villiers welcomed the operation. "There are still some who remain intent on causing murder and mayhem," she said.

"I congratulate PSNI officers for taking these weapons and ammunition off our streets and thwarting potential attacks on the community."

District commander, Chief Superintendent Stephen Cargin, praised his officers.

"We have seen again the blatant disregard of those individuals willing to endanger life in our community," he said.

"I have nothing but praise for the officers involved in the operation."

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