Republic of Ireland news

Pair charged with IRA membership after cross-border operation

Police and an army bomb disposal team at Shandon Park Golf Club in east Belfast to examine a suspect device placed under a car in June. Picture by David Young/PA Wire

Two men arrested in the Republic in connection with the discovery of a bomb under a police officer's car in east Belfast were last night charged with membership of the IRA.

Paul Casey (49) of Carton Court, Ballymun in Dublin and Robert O'Leary (41) with an address at Clancy Road, Finglas, were both charged at a special sitting of the three-judge Special Criminal Court.

The two men were arrested by officers from the Garda Special Detective Unit in Dublin on Tuesday morning as part of a cross-border investigation into the discovery of an explosive device under a serving police officer's car at Shandon Park Golf Club in Belfast in June.

The device, which did not detonate, was declared to be a "viable improvised explosive device".

The murder bid happened a short distance from the Police Service of Northern Ireland headquarters.

Dissident republican group, the New IRA, claimed responsibility for the attack at the time.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt remanded both men in custody to appear before the Special Criminal Court again on Monday.

June's bomb alert sparked a a major security operation.

The golf club was evacuated and a vice captain's day tournament postponed.

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