‘Police murder bid' charge after Lurgan terror raids

A man has been charged with the attempted murder of police officers, and three others with targeting a former security force member, after anti-terror raids in Lurgan.

The four men were arrested in the Co Armagh town last week as part of an investigation into dissident republican activity in the area.

Following a large-scale operation, detectives recovered a fully prepared improvised explosive device designed to penetrate armour plating when fired at relatively close range from a makeshift launcher.

One man, aged 22, has been charged with the attempted murder of police officers and possession of explosives with intent to endanger life on 31 August in Lurgan.

The others, aged 22, 24 and 46, have been charged with preparation of terrorist acts - namely the targeting of a former member of the security forces in the Craigavon area.

All four are due to appear before Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

PSNI Assistant Chief Constable Will Kerr, head of the Crime Operations Department, explained that police had issued a photo of part of the device which had been deconstructed by police and shows the makeshift casing, a detonator, Semtex and copper piping.

Part of the device found in Lurgan - the makeshift casing, a detonator, Semtex and copper piping. Credit: PSNI

“The device was located in a derelict house in a residential area close to people’s homes,” ACC Kerr said.

“Those responsible have absolutely no regard for the local community, or indeed any community.

“I would ask all those with any influence in the community to use that influence to persuade people not to get involved in this type of activity."

ACC Kerr also thanked the public for their patience and understanding during the disruption of the search activity.

“Our primary aim has been community safety,” he added.

“We are committed to doing this by working with the community and acting on information provided to us so that together we can keep people safe.”

A 22-year-old man arrested last Thursday as part of the same investigation was released unconditionally over the weekend.