Man found to be in possession of explosives at a farmyard jailed

A man who was found to be in possession of explosives, a firearm and ammunition at a farmyard in Northern Ireland has been jailed for 14 years.

Barry Petticrew, who is 45-years-old, from Swanlinbar, Co. Cavan was sentenced today, December 20, in Antrim Crown Court after admitting possession of the items with intent and having articles for use in terrorism.

The PSNI made the seizure in a rented, disused farmyard at Caldragh Road, Kinawley, Co. Fermanagh on October 8, 2014.

The seizure included:

  • Half a ton of fertiliser and a number of packs of home-made explosives.
  • Timer units, detonators and fuses.
  • Pipe bombs and component parts for other devices.
  • A suspected firearm and approximately 100 rounds of ammunition.
  • Forensic suits and gloves.

Following a a proactive operation and investigation into violent dissident republican terrorist activity in October 2014, the PSNI arrested Petticrew after they discovered him moving some of the items at the farmyard.

Petticrew made an attempt to run several hundred yards across fields to the border with Co. Cavan before he was arrested, according to the PSNI.

The haul included a number of items used by a terrorist grouping, according to Detective Inspector Davy Lowans from the Serious Crime Branch of the PSNI.

“This haul contained many of the components used by a terrorist grouping, everything from Timer Power Units and fertiliser to a coffee grinder, ammunition and forensic suits.

“We believe this was for use by dissident terrorists in Fermanagh and other parts of Northern Ireland.

The quantities and range of items recovered would have enabled a number of explosive devices to be constructed.

“The seizure will have had an impact on the terrorists’ capabilities and undoubtedly has saved lives,” he said.

The subsequent clearance operation in Kinawley two years ago caused considerable disruption to the law-abiding local community, Lowans said.

In total there was 350 exhibits which had to be processed during the investigation.

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