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Gardai are baffled by chemical find in suburban lock-up

CHEMICALS found in a suspected underground bomb factory needed other materials to make lethal explosives.

The Herald revealed yesterday that gardai had sealed off the basement storage facility at Tallaght's Blessington Road for two nights after the discovery was made by a member of staff.

Workers noticed the door of the store room, which is made of steel and always locked, had been opened and saw a light inside.

They confronted a number of men, believed to be from Eastern Europe, who were told to leave and escorted off the site.

When the workers went back and saw the chemicals on the bench they became suspicious and alerted gardai and the area was sealed off.

After several hours gardai were able to confirm that the chemicals were not those used in the manufacture of drugs such as crystal meth which are made in homemade labs.

An army bomb disposal team was called to the location on Tuesday night and experts determined that the chemicals could be used to make bombs.

testS

They spent more than three hours at the lock-up before declaring the scene safe after soldiers carried out a number of specialist tests on the chemicals.

The chemicals were then given back to gardai, and last night sources told the Herald that further testing on the chemicals took place throughout yesterday.

Gardai are still trying to establish who was working with the chemicals.

A senior source said: "What we do know is that these chemicals could be used in the making of bombs, but for this to happen other material would need to be present in the lock-up which was not there.

"So we simply don't know the exact purpose of why these chemicals were there, and to say anything else right now would just be speculation."

The source added that gardai do not think the men had been using the lock-up for any great length of time.

kfoy@herald.ie


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