Jury discharged in Limerick pipe-bomb trial

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Limerick Circuit Court
THE trial of a Limerick man who is charged in connection with the discovery of a pipe-bomb more than two years ago was dramatically halted this week.

THE trial of a Limerick man who is charged in connection with the discovery of a pipe-bomb more than two years ago was dramatically halted this week.

Gerard O’Callaghan, aged 27, formerly of Cecil Street and now with an address at Top Cross, Ardagh denies possession of an explosive device in suspicious circumstances on January 15, 2013.

It is alleged the pipe-bomb was found in a bedside locker when gardai searched a ground floor apartment at Upper Cecil Street at around 8.30am on the date of the alleged offence.

It is the prosecution case that the defendant was observed leaning out of a bed and was seen by gardai rustling with something on the ground.

In his opening statement, John O’Sullivan BL, prosecuting, said it will alleged an “improvised explosive device” was found underneath a bedside locker when gardai searched the bedroom.

In his evidence, Garda Michael Conroy, who is attached to the divisional scenes of crime unit, said the device consisted of copper piping – around 22cms in length – which was sealed at both ends with a fuse connected to it.

The start of the trial before a jury of eight men and four women was delayed due to legal argument and following one day of evidence last Friday, it was further adjourned to this Tuesday to allow further legal argument to take place in the absence of the jury.

On Tuesday morning, one of the jurors was discharged by Judge Tom O’Donnell after he became unwell.

Later in the afternoon the remaining jurors were discharged after they heard there had been difficulties securing transcripts of the legal arguments, which had been requested by defence counsel Brendan Nix SC.

Judge O’Donnell also noted the likelihood of the trial continuing into to next week, which would create logistical issues as he is due to be sitting elsewhere.

The case was adjourned to June 2.