Belfast Telegraph

Description released of suspect who staged Craigavon explosion in bid to kill police

The device planted in Craigavon on Friday night
The device planted in Craigavon on Friday night

Detectives from PSNI Terrorism Investigation Unit have said they believe an explosion in Craigavon on Friday was staged in a bid to kill police officers.

Police received a report from a member of the public after a loud bang or explosion on Tullygally Road. The Irish News reported receiving a call claiming a mortar had been fired at police in the same area.

The call to the Irish News stated that a "horizontal mortar was fired at a passed police patrol" on the Tullgally Road beside Alderdale flats but had "missed its target".

"So there is a live warhead in the vicinity," the caller warned.

"I believe the incident was staged in order to lure police into the area where a booby-trap device was placed and designed to explode if moved or touched," said Detective Superintendent Richard Campbell.

"This was clearly designed to kill anyone who lifted or moved the device."

Detective Superintendent Campbell said someone knows where the device in question was manufactured.

"I would appeal to anyone who has any information about activity in an outbuilding or garage in recent days or weeks that may seem out of the ordinary to get in touch with detectives. 

"This device had to be transported to the area where it was planted and I am appealing for anyone who saw any unusual activity or vehicles acting suspiciously in the area of Tullygally Road on Friday night or in recent days or weeks to get in touch," he said.

“My second appeal is in relation to a suspicious person seen running away from the in the area of the bus stop at around 11.45pm on Friday night. They are described as being between 5’6” and 5’9” tall, of slim or medium build and believed to be aged in their late teens or early 20s," he said.

Ammunition technical officers near the scene in Tullygally Road (Brian Lawless/PA)
Ammunition technical officers near the scene in Tullygally Road (Brian Lawless/PA)

"They were described as wearing a light grey or beige long sleeved hooded top with the hood up and their face covered.  They are reported to have made their way from the bus stop into open ground that borders the Tullygally Road, Aldervale flats and Drumglass Estate in an area known locally as the Black Path. 

"I would appeal to anyone who saw this individual in the area or in the wider Craigavon area on Friday night or early Saturday morning to please contact my detectives.

“I ask that anyone who may be able to help our investigation and identify those responsible to call Police on 101 and ask to speak to detectives in the Terrorism Investigation Unit in Castlereagh or if you would prefer information can be given anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

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