IRA spy ring suspect gets bail


The last person held in custody on charges linked to an alleged IRA spy ring at Stormont was released on bail yesterday.

Mr Ciaran Kearney (31), Commedagh Drive, west Belfast, was one of four arrested after a series of police swoops, including one at Sinn Féin's office at Stormont. He has been in custody since October 4th on five charges of having information useful to terrorists.

The charges related to 1,218 documents found in the home of his father-in-law Mr Denis Donaldson, the Sinn Féin administrator at Stormont.

In the High Court in Belfast on November 5th, Lord Justice Nicholson refused to release Mr Kearney on bail. But yesterday the judge said he had decided to release him because he did not want to make any distinction between him and Mr Donaldson, who was granted bail last Friday by another judge.

Mr Kearney's bail was set at £3,000 and he was ordered not to enter the Stormont estate or have any contact with officials there.

The judge also ordered Mr Kearney and his wife to surrender their passports.