Police have released images of a dissident republican bomb placed under a lorry destined to cross the Irish Sea.
The bomb, for which the Continuity IRA have been blamed, was discovered on a lorry on Tuesday at a commercial premises in Lurgan.
Police said a warning call was made to a media outlet last Friday, stating a device had been left in a trailer in Belfast docks and it would explode on a midnight ferry.
The trailer, however, had never left Lurgan and there was no midnight ferry scheduled to sail.
A fruitless search was carried out on a ferry that left Belfast at around 11.15pm, but a further, more detailed call was made to the same media outlet on Monday.
This call led to the discovery of a device under a lorry trailer at a business park in Lurgan on Tuesday.
It was claimed the intention was for the device to explode on Friday evening around the time the United Kingdom left the EU.
On Friday, police released two images of the device, which Detective Superintendent Sean Wright said could have caused serious injury or worse.
“These images clearly show the explosive device attached to the lorry. They also demonstrate the sheer recklessness of those who knowingly put the driver, road users and the wider public at risk of death or serious injury," he said.
“I continue to appeal to anyone who was in the area of Silverwood Industrial Estate between 4.00pm and 10.00pm on Friday, 31 January and who may have noticed any unusual activity in the area to contact police. In addition I ask that anyone who was driving in the area and who would have dash-cam footage around these same times that they contact police, as a matter of urgency.”
According to the latest PSNI statistics, there were 19 bombing incidents in Northern Ireland from February 1, 2019, to January 31, 2020. This compares with 17 the previous year.
One such incident occurred in July last year, when the Continuity IRA were held responsible for an attempted mortar attack on police in Craigavon.
The group were also blamed for a bomb attack on police and army bomb experts in Wattlebridge, Co Fermanagh, the following month. A device exploded as security services were dealing with a hoax device placed by the side of the road. No one was injured.
Figures show there was also a drop in the number of people arrested and charged for terror offences last year.
There were 128 persons arrested under Section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000 in the last year, compared to 166 during the previous year.
The number of persons subsequently charged also dropped from 20 to 14 over the same period.