A man whose DNA was found on a grenade which was thrown at a house containing four elderly people has been jailed for three and a half years.
The bomb exploded outside the house causing extensive damage to the exterior and three cars that were parked in the driveway. The residents were unhurt.
Michael McCabe (aged 23) was charged with handling explosives after his DNA was found on the grenade pin which was discarded near the scene.
The court heard the attack was part of a feud involving criminals “significantly higher up the ladder” than McCabe. One of these criminals is now dead while the other is not in the country. McCabe became involved because of a family relationship to one of them.
McCabe of Buttercup Avenue, Coolock pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of explosives at Edenmore Park, Raheny on May 21, 2009.
Judge Martin Nolan said a jail sentence could not be avoided despite McCabe’s good work history and guilty plea. He said McCabe must have known the grenade was going to be used for a violent purpose when he handled it.
Garda Alan Roche told prosecuting counsel Derek Cooney BL that the explosion caused extensive damage to the front of the building and the cars. He said the four occupants of the house were quite elderly and had lived there for most of their lives.
The next day a search of the area uncovered parts of the grenade, including the detonating lever and pin, and pieces of shrapnel.
The parts were analysed and it was found the bomb originated from the Yugoslavian army. DNA tests of the pin matched samples taken from McCabe and he was arrested.
He made no admissions in interview.
McCabe has 24 previous convictions including three for drug dealing and 17 for road traffic offences.
Defence counsel Michael O’Higgins SC said McCabe is related to one of the main culprits of the attack but that contact with this person has now been severed. He said McCabe has a good work history and is currently living with his girlfriend.
He asked Judge Nolan to be as lenient as possible and to note that McCabe has not been charged with throwing the grenade, only possessing it.