2 charged with foiled mortar attack in N. Ireland

Last Updated: Wed, Mar 06, 2013 15:30 hrs

Two men have been charged with trying to drive van-mounted mortars into the Northern Ireland city of Londonderry for an Irish Republican Army attack on a police base.

A judge denied bail to 37-year-old Gary McDaid and 35-year-old Seamus McLaughlin at their Londonderry arraignment Wednesday.

Police say McLaughlin drove the van containing four mortar tubes and explosives-packed rounds, while McDaid was riding a motorcycle that was to be their getaway vehicle. Officers arrested both men Sunday as they drove into Londonderry.

A detective testified that the van contained an incendiary bomb designed to destroy the vehicle once the mortars were fired by timer. When arrested, McLaughlin was wearing rubber gloves and forensic covers on his shoes to avoid leaving evidence.

No IRA faction has claimed responsibility for the failed attack.

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