herald

Wednesday 20 August 2014

RIRA gun run suspect held in garage bust

ARMED gardai have re-arrested a Lithuanian national who they suspect is heavily involved in dealing firearms to dissident Republicans.

As part of the operation in Navan, Co Meath, detectives recovered three pistols in a garage along with ammunition.

A Lithuanian national in his 30s who was arrested last week as part of the same operation was arrested again at the scene on Sunday night.

The suspect was taken to Kells Garda Station, where he was being questioned last night as gardai continued to search a number of locations in Co Meath.

A source explained: "This man is suspected of selling weapons to dissident Republicans as well as other groupings. While the guns are small – 8mm handguns – they can still be deadly.

"Sunday night's operation was part of a mop-up after the Special Detective Unit made arrests on Monday of last week.

"Officers discovered weapons in the garage that they did not locate last week. Charges are very likely in this case."

charge

After last week's operation in Navan, two men appeared at a special sitting of the Special Criminal Court in Dublin on Wednesday evening charged with possessing a .32 handgun.

Eimantas Valteris (30) and Patrick McDonagh (49) were arrested by gardai on Monday morning in Louth and Meath.

Valteris, a Lithuanian national with an address at Park Vale, Grange Rath, Drogheda, Co Meath, was charged with the unlawful possession of a .32 Baikal semi-automatic at Balmoral Industrial Estate, Navan, Co Meath.

McDonagh, of at Naughton Close, Dundalk, Co Louth, was charged with the unlawful possession of the same pistol at Main Street, Castlebellingham, Co Louth on June 10, 2013.

He was also charged with membership of an unlawful organisation within the State styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Oglaigh na hEireann, otherwise the IRA on the same date.

Both men were remanded in custody with liberty to apply for bail to appear in front of the court again tomorrow.

kfoy@herald.ie

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