Detention extended of 10 held after training camp raid

 

The detention period of ten men being questioned by gardai following the discovery of a suspected terrorist training camp has been extended.

The ten can now be held for questioning for another 24 hours. The move follows the arms find yesterday as part of a planned - and ongoing - operation on the borders of counties Waterford and Tipperary.

The 10 men being held at three separate police bases were aged from the late teens to the early 40s and came from the Waterford, Wexford and Limerick areas. A 10-year-old boy was also found at the site and is believed to have been the son of one of the men arrested.

Police linked the discovery, in a heavily wooded area of the region's Comeragh Mountains, to the activities of the Continuity IRA - an outlawed dissident republican terrorist faction.

Weapons including two rifles and two shotguns, ammunition and other terrorist equipment were found at the camp, a police spokesman said.

They The men are being held under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act which allows suspects to be kept in custody for up to 72 hours before being either charged or released.

Gardai did not formally pinpoint the area of the search, but it was understood to be around seven miles south of the Co Tipperary town of Clonmel.

The forest there had been cleared and a makeshift firing range set up. Yesterday's arrests were also understood to have marked the culmination of work over a number of months.

The operation involved members of the Irish police force's National Surveillance unit, as well as locally-based officers.

Gardai said the operation was continuing and being extended to other parts of the country. The scene of the raid was sealed off ahead of detailed technical examination.