27/02/2015

Man Jailed For Possessing Explosives

A 23-year-old man from Belfast has been jailed after he was caught with a bomb in the city last year.

Connor Hughes, 23, from Altan Close in Dunmurry, was arrested in the Shaws Road area of west Belfast on 27 March 2014. He had been stopped by police and was found to have been in possession of a holdall which contained an improvised explosive device.

The holdall contained a fire extinguisher, home-made explosives, a detonator and command wire.

Appearing at Laganside Court on Friday (27 February), Mr Hughes pleaded guilty to possession of explosives with intent to endanger life.

He was sentenced to 11 years, half of which will be spent in prison and half on licence.
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Welcoming the sentencing, Detective Superintendent Kevin Geddes, from Serious Crime Branch, said: "Police action on that night last March undoubtedly saved lives, most probably the lives of our police colleagues who were working to provide a service in the area to the local community.

"But the community itself was also put in danger of death or serious injury because of the highly unpredictable nature of these improvised explosive devices.

"The community is safer today as a result of this young man's imprisonment. While we welcome the sentence, it is a matter of concern to see a man as young as 23 become involved in such criminal activity and waste his future behind bars."

(JP)

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