Accused ‘wore disguises and wigs outside firearms dealer’

The prosecution case has concluded in the trial of a Trinity College graduate and two men who are charged with the possession of firearms and ammunition.

Ursula Shannon, aged 30, who is a prominent member of socialist republican group Eirigi and a Trinity College graduate, and co-accused John McGreal, aged 37, and Colin Brady, aged 24, have pleaded not guilty to the possession of two handguns and 32 rounds of ammunition at Tullybeg, Rahan, Co Offaly on Nov 27, 2012.

They have each pleaded not guilty to the unlawful possession of one 9mm parabellum calibre Taurus PT92 semi-automatic pistol, one magazine suitable for use with the Taurus PT92 pistol, one 9mm parabellum calibre Walther P5 semi-automatic pistol and one ZGJY branded combined stun gun and flashlight.

They have also pleaded not guilty to the possession of 25 rounds of 9mm ammunition and 7 rounds of 9mm ammunition.

The non-jury court heard evidence the accused were wearing wigs and disguises when intercepted by armed gardaí outside the premises of a firearms dealer.

Lawyers for the accused told the court they were not challenging any of the evidence in the trial by way of cross-examination or by way of submissions in the case.

John Troy, aged 33, a fourth co-accused of Dunard Avenue, Cabra, has pleaded guilty to the unlawful possession of one 9mm parabellum calibre Taurus PT92 semi-automatic pistol, one magazine suitable for use with the pistol, one 9mm parabellum calibre Walther P5 semi-automatic pistol and one ZGJY branded combined stun gun and flashlight. He will be sentenced at a later date.

At the outset of the prosecution case, Shane Costelloe told the court that gardaí were in receipt of confidential information that a stolen vehicle would be used as part of an operation by dissident republicans for a theft at a property in Co Offaly.

The court was told armed gardaí surrounded the stolen van in which the accused were travelling outside a residential premises which also doubled as a business for a licensed firearm seller.

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