NewsCrime Desk

Judge refuses to throw out case against men charged over gun cache seizure

Gardai at the scene of the arms seizure
Gardai at the scene of the arms seizure

A JUDGE has refused to throw out the case of three men charged in connection with an arms seizure in Dublin.

Members of the Garda Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau and the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation carried out arrests on Jan. 24 last at a unit in a business park in Rathcoole, in Co. Dublin. where 15 firearms and 1,300 rounds of ammunition were recovered.

They were detained at Ronanstown and Clondalkin Stations under the Offence against the State Act.

Declan Brady, 50, from The Park, Wolstan Abbey, Celbridge, Co. Kildare, Johnathon Harding, 44, of McNeill Court, Sallins, Co. Kildare and James Walsh, 33, with an address at Neilstown Drive, Clondalkin, Dublin 22, were remanded in custody on January 27 last.

They each face the same three charges, under the Firearms Act, for unlawful possession of five revolvers, 20 rounds of ammunition.

The charges state the firearms were Smith and Wesson, Zastava and Rossi type, five and six shot revolvers.

They have not yet entered indicated how they will plead further and further serious charges could be brought. The three men appeared before Judge Kathryn Hutton at Cloverhill District Court on Wednesday.

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has directed that they are to face trial on indictment meaning the case will be sent to a higher court when the book of evidence has been served on the defendants.

The prosecution asked for more time to complete the book of evidence, however, lawyers for the three men objected and applied for a strike out arguing that the file on the case has been with the DPP since May.

However, a solicitor for the DPP opposed their application and said the case involved more than 200 statements.

Judge Hutton refused to strike out the charges and granted the prosecution's request for a four-week adjournment. However, she marked the case peremptory against the State meaning the book of evidence will have to be ready to be served at the next hearing.