Northern Ireland news

Man whose home was centre of MI5 sting dies suddenly

Newry man Colin Winters died suddenly last Thursday
Connla Young

A man whose home was at the centre of an MI5 bugging operation has died suddenly.

Colin 'Colly' Winters died last Thursday and was buried yesterday after requiem Mass in his native Newry.

In January he was among seven men who pleaded guilty to a range of charges linked to an MI5 operation which included the bugging of his home at Ardcarn Park in the city.

The meetings are alleged to have been linked to a faction of the Continuity IRA.

A post on a Facebook page belonging to Continuity Sinn Féin last night described the Newry man as a “Staff Officer Continuity Republican Army”.

A court previously heard that that MI5 had gained access to Mr Winters' home and planted listening devices throughout the property which were used to record conversations.

It was claimed those involved in the meetings were recorded discussing potential targets for attack, including specific police officers.

Potential attacks against members of the judiciary were also discussed, along with weapons training, funding and plans to obtain weapons.

A PSNI detective involved in the investigation also told the court that the suspects were "leading key figures of a proscribed organisation".

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