Former INLA Dublin leader dissociates himself from organisation

The former leader of the INLA in Dublin, Declan 'Whacker' Duffy, today publicly turned his back on the terrorist group and pleaded guilty to an INLA membership charge.

The former leader of the INLA in Dublin, Declan 'Whacker' Duffy, today publicly turned his back on the terrorist group and pleaded guilty to an INLA membership charge.

Duffy (aged 35), a native of Armagh City and father of two, with an address at Hanover St, Dublin 8, appeared at the Special Criminal Court in Dublin and pleaded guilty to the charge.

He admitted membership of an illegal organisation styling itself the Irish National Liberation Army, otherwise the INLA, on June 22 last year.

Duffy went into the witness box and was asked by his counsel Mr Michael O’ Higgins SC:"You are dissociating yourself from the group the INLA, to which you have pleaded guilty to membership?"

Duffy replied: "Yes, that’s right."

Duffy also told Mr O’ Higgins that he had applied to the Governor of Portlaoise Prison to be moved from the INLA wing in the jail and was prepared to move to the area know as 'The Basement', where a number of prisoner are kept separate from dissident republican prisoners on other landings.

During the 15-minute hearing, Duffy, wearing a beige jacket, blue jeans and a striped shirt was arraigned by the court registrar on the membership charge and replied : "Guilty."

He was called by Mr O’ Higgins to give evidence about conditions under which he would be admitted to bail. Duffy has been in custody since he was charged with INLA membership in June last year.

He agreed to live at an address in Nicholas St, Dublin 8 , to abide by a curfew between 11 pm and 8 am and to sign on twice daily at Pearse St Garda Station.

Duffy also agreed to carry a mobile phone at all times, to give the number ot the gardai and not to use any other mobile phone.

Mr O’ Higgins said that Duffy did not have a passport and he agreed not apply for one. He also agreed not to associate with anyone convicted of or charged with scheduled offences, offences which are dealt with by the Special Criminal Court.

Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne, presiding with Mr Justice John Mc Menamin and Judge Cormac Dunne, granted Duffy bail on his own bond of 100 Euro, two independent sureties of 10,000 Euro each and on the conditions given to the court. He was remanded on bail until May 19th when he will surrender himself at Portlaoise Prison and the court will sentence him at the end of this month.

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