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Jailed: IRA bomber Doris found guilty of fuel laundering

By Staff Reporter

A judge has slammed the absence of "remorse or care" shown by a convicted IRA bomber found guilty of fuel laundering.

During sentencing the judge also rebuked Gareth Malachy Doris for his disrespectful stance in court, ordering him to uncross his arms while being addressed.

The 39-year-old of Gortnaskea Place, Coalisland, was handed down a sentence of four months in custody.

Judge John Meehan told him: "You are the type of offender who engages in free living at the cost of others. You have shown no remorse or care."

Two others admitted their roles, linked to laundered fuel being used by a Tyrone coach company.

Kevin Quinn (40), of Ardean Close, Cookstown, is one of the owners of J&K Coaches.

He pleaded guilty to fraudulent evasion of fuel duty and having vehicles with laundered fuel in the tanks.

He received a sentence of one month in custody suspended for two years. He was also fined £1,000.

John Thomas O'Neill (46), of Sandy Row, Coalisland, pleaded guilty to a single count of fraudulent evasion of duty. He was imprisoned for one month.

The cost of lost revenue in this matter was £2,061.

Charges against a fourth man were withdrawn.

However, Doris had contested the charges against him.

Dungannon Magistrates Court heard police and Customs officials went to the coach company premises in Ardboe on March 19, 2014. Four people were there, one of which was believed to be Doris, but he fled on foot.

A car was located in the coach yard which was registered to him and a phone was discovered inside. Although this was not registered to Doris, his DNA was recovered from the battery.

He was later arrested but denied being at the premises or having any involvement in the operation.

Doris claimed to have loaned his car to someone else, but declined to provide police the name of the person or make a statement to that effect.

During police interview he provided a DNA specimen, before making a pre-prepared statement denying involvement, then gave "no comment" replies to all other questions.

A search of the DNA database also threw up matches to two fuel laundering sites in Armagh.

At one, a bottle had been recovered from a site on November 19, 2013 with a full DNA profile for Doris, along with a jumper from which DNA was found inside the cuffs. At the second site a glove was found on March 27, 2014 with DNA evidence, as was a jacket that smelled of fuel.

During the contested hearing last month Doris declined to give evidence on his own behalf and was warned by District Judge Meehan failure to do so meant inferences from his decision could be drawn.

Doris had refused to consent to community service, but Judge Meehan said: "It's irrelevant. It is quite clear what is required by the public and what is expected from courts.

"Fuel laundering is a scourge on the community in which criminals carve out a lucrative living for themselves at the expense of the poor and vulnerable."

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