Man found guilty of IRA membership jailed for five years

A Dublin man arrested during a Special Branch investigation into dissident republican activity in the city was jailed for five years for IRA membership by the Special Criminal Court today.

Sean Farrell (aged 27), of Kilfenora Road, Crumlin, was convicted last week of membership of an unlawful organisation within the State styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hÉireann, otherwise the IRA on July 7 last year.

During the trial, the court heard that Farrell was arrested in the Coombe area after gardaí found three guns and ammunition at a flat at Bride St.

One of Farrell's fingerprints was found on a black plastic bag in which a pump action shotgun was wrapped.

During six interviews while in garda custody, Farrell refused to answer material questions. Chief Superintendent Diarmuid O' Sullivan told the court that he believed that Farrell was a member of the IRA on the date in question.

Farrell denied in evidence that he was a member of the IRA but said he was a republican and a former member of Sinn Féin.

Mr Justice Paul Butler, presiding, said the court was satisfied that Farrell's failure to answer material questions put to him by gardaí was "wilful, deliberate and calculated".

He said the belief evidence of Chief Supt O' Sullivan was corroborated by Farrell's failure to answer material questions.

The sentence was backdated to January 1 this year.


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