Trial date set for alleged IRA members

The Special Criminal Court in Dublin today fixed a date in November for the trial of five men arrested after gardai intercepted an alleged IRA operation in Bray, Co Wicklow last year.

The Special Criminal Court in Dublin today fixed a date in November for the trial of five men arrested after gardai intercepted an alleged IRA operation in Bray, Co Wicklow last year.

The five Dublin men are each charged with membership of an unlawful organisation styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hEireann, otherwise the IRA on October 11 last year.

They are Thomas Gilson (aged 22), of Bawnlea Avenue, Jobstown, Tallaght, Patrick Brennan (aged 39), of Lindisfarne Avenue, Clondalkin, Sean O' Donnell (aged 30), of Castle Drive, Sandymount, Stephen Birney (aged 28), of Conquerhill Road, Clontarf and John Troy (aged 21), of Donard Avenue.

Today the court fixed November 18 next as the date for the trial of the five men.

A previous bail hearing was told that the men were arrested after an off-duty Special Branch detective spotted suspicious activity in Bray.

Gardai who arrested the men found balaclavas, a sledgehammer, pick axe handles, hand-held radios and a yellow fluorescent jacket with the word "Garda" on it.

Detective Chief Superintendent Peter Maguire told the court that the accused were taking part in an IRA operation at the time of their arrest.

The five men were remanded on continuing bail until November 18.

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