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Derry trio admit possession of armour-piercing bomb


Jason Ceulemans, Damien Harkin and Neil Hegarty appear at Belfast Crown Court, where they pleaded guilty to possession of an improvised rocket device

Three Londonderry men have pleaded guilty to having an armour-piercing bomb and articles for use in acts of terrorism.

The trio, 42-year-old Jason Lee Anna Ceulemans, Damien Harkin (48), and Neil Christopher Hegarty (49), pleaded guilty at Belfast Crown Court yesterday to possessing "an explosively formed projectile (EFP) type improvised device" with intent to endanger life.

Ceulemans, from the Lecky Road, Harkin, from Westland Avenue, and Hegarty, from Sackville Court, all in Derry, also admitted having two walkie talkies and a torch for a terrorist purpose on the same date, December 6, 2012.

Although no details were given to Belfast Recorder, Judge David McFarland, previous hearings were told the usually rocket-fired EFP, a special type of shaped charge designed to penetrate armour effectively at distances, was uncovered in a car stopped by the police in the Creggan area of Derry.

However, the court did hear that the men did not intend using the device themselves, but that there was sufficient evidence to support the conviction their possession was on a "second limb" basis.

A prosecution lawyer said that in view of the guilty pleas, two other charges, one of conspiracy to cause an explosion using the device, and secondly of possessing it under suspicious circumstances, should be allowed to "remain on the books", and not proceeded with, without leave of the court and the Court of Appeal.

Following applications from their respective defence lawyers, the three men will be sentenced next month.

Belfast Telegraph