Omagh suspect bomb case 'could be dropped'
The case against a man accused of the 1998 Omagh bombing in which 29 people were killed could be dropped, a court has heard.
A senior barrister is due to give the DPP a "final opinion" on whether murder charges against Seamus Daly should proceed to trial within three weeks, a lawyer for the prosecution service said.
A lawyer for Daly (44) from Kilnasaggart Road, Jonesborough in south Armagh, told Omagh Magistrates Court there was no case to answer.
District Judge Bernie Kelly said: "If there is, even at this stage, a possibility that this might well not be proceeded then it is incumbent on all of us to ensure Mr Daly is not incarcerated for an hour longer than necessary."
Evidence is still being sought from gardai about the worst atrocity of the Troubles but three-quarters of it has already been received, the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) told the court.
The judge said she wanted the decision within three weeks, predicting that the senior counsel opinion would decisively "inform" the decision of the DPP.
"I would have thought it highly unlikely that a senior prosecutor or directing officer is going to go against the decision of a senior counsel."
Daly faces 29 counts of murder over the August 1998 car bomb, which killed shoppers from Ireland, Britain and Spain. The bricklayer also faces counts of causing the explosion in Omagh and possession of a bomb in the market town with intent to endanger life or property.
No one has ever been convicted in connection with the Omagh massacre.