Belfast Telegraph

Explosive charge teen girl allowed to visit lover in Hydebank

By Ashleigh McDonald

A young woman accused of making explosives for dissident republicans has had her bail varied to allow her one visit to her co-accused boyfriend in Hydebank Young Offenders Centre.

Orla O'Hanlon (18) is accused along with her 19-year old partner Keith McConnan of a number of offences including making and possessing explosives with intent to endanger life or property at their south Armagh home.

The couple were arrested following police searches of their home on Tievcrom Road in Forkill in December 2013, where a number of items including an industrial 3ft-tall grinder were seized.

It is the Crown's case that when this grinder was tested, white powder confirmed as ammonium nitrate - similar to that used in home-made explosives - was discovered in and around the appliance.

O'Hanlon spent time in custody and was subsequently released on bail.

One of the bail conditions was that she was not allowed to contact co-accused McCannon.

Last week O'Hanlon made an application at Belfast Crown Court to have this condition of her bail altered to allow her to visit her boyfriend.

The application was objected to by the Crown on the grounds that boxes for two grinders were found in the house with only one grinder located.

Crown prosecutor Robin Steer said this gave rise to police concerns that "a quantity of explosives is outstanding in the area".

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