Northern Ireland

Barry Petticrew jailed over bomb-making factory find

Barry Petticrew Image copyright PSNI
Image caption Petticrew was living in Swanlinbar, near the site of the bomb factory

A 45-year-old mechanic caught at a bomb-making factory on a farm will spend 11 years behind bars.

Barry Petticrew was arrested in October 2014 after undercover police surveillance on farm buildings near Kinawley, County Fermanagh.

When he became aware he was being watched, Petticrew tried to escape across the countryside.

Police found pipes, timer units, ammunition and high grade explosives in the buildings.

Image copyright PSNI
Image caption The judge said Petticrew was a mature man who had allowed himself to be associated with dissident republicans

Antrim Crown Court heard the apparatus could be used for numerous small bombs, or one large device - potentially among the largest ever used in Northern Ireland.

The devices were found in an advanced state of preparation and in an area of dissident republican activity, police said.

When caught by police, Petticrew, who will serve a further three years on licence, said: "I'm not involved in terrorism. This house belongs to a friend of mine."

Image copyright PSNI
Image caption Police found pipes, timer units, ammunition and high grade explosives
Image copyright PSNI
Image caption The judge said the find presented a significant threat of serious risk of harm to the community

Judge Gordon Kerr QC said, the mechanic was a mature man who had allowed himself to be associated with dissident republicans, five years after he had been convicted of a terrorism-related offence at a Special Criminal Court in Dublin.

Image copyright PSNI
Image caption The apparatus found could have been used for numerous small bombs or one large device

Judge Kerr said that presented a significant threat of serious risk of harm to the community.

Image caption Police sealed off the area after Petticrew was arrested

At the time, Belfast-born Petticrew was living in Swanlinbar, near the site of the bomb factory, but his address was given as Maghaberry Prison.

Related Topics

More on this story