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Calls for London heiress Rose Dugdale's arrest following IRA bomb-making claims

Dugdale's methods are said to have been used in an attack on the Baltic Exchange in 1992, which killed three people, and in the London Docklands bomb in 1996, which left another two dead

Rose Dugdale

Allan Preston

A group representing victims of the Troubles has called for an investigation into new claims that a London heiress who joined the IRA was behind a series of high-profile bombings.

Rose Dugdale (80) is the subject of Seán O’Driscoll’s book Heiress, Rebel, Vigilante, Bomber. She has previously served nine years in prison for stealing art used to try and fund the escape of IRA prisoners.

It is now alleged that after growing up as the daughter of a London millionaire, she was involved in developing bomb-making techniques used in several IRA attacks during the Troubles.

Rose Dugdale in an RUC ‘wanted’ poster

The book is based on interviews with Dugdale, who currently lives in Dublin, and others, and for the first time it’s suggested that she had a key role in developing the IRA’s bomb-making capability.

Her methods are said to have been used in an attack on the Baltic Exchange in 1992, which killed three people, and in the London Docklands bomb in 1996, which left another two dead.

Dugdale’s techniques were also said to have been used in a massive 2,500lb bomb in a 1991 attack on Glenanne barracks, Co Armagh, that killed three soldiers.

Reacting to the claims, Kenny Donaldson of Innocent Victims United, has called for her immediate arrest.

“The reported confessions Rose Dugdale has made within this new book demand that she be immediately arrested,” he said.

“Here we have in black and white someone allegedly confirming their involvement in the making of bombs which led to the murders of people, security forces and civilians,” he said.

He also voiced concerns about legislation on the legacy of the Troubles currently going through Westminster.

He said if immunity was granted in exchange for information, then terrorists would then be “emboldened to wax lyrical” about their involvement in violence, which would be painted as “some form of romanticised resistance against tyranny”.

“These types of offerings do nothing other than dance on the graves of innocent victims; it is abhorrent and such practice must cease,” he said.

Sean O'Driscoll's book about Rose Dugdale

However, the author said last night he “did everything I possibly could to keep it balanced” and found it “frustrating” of being accused of romanticising violence after striving to include the stories of IRA victims.

Sean O’Driscoll said what he was reporting may actually be of use to victims, bringing to light information that may otherwise never have been made known.

Urging his critics to read the book first, Mr O’Driscoll said: “I feel that if loyalists and republicans are attacking me, I must be doing something right.”

And he added that “coercing a million outraged Protestants into a Catholic-majority state always seemed like an exercise in futility”.

A PSNI spokesperson said: “Police have not examined the content of the book referred to; however detectives will always pursue any credible evidence of criminal offences.”

A spokesperson for An Garda Síochána said that it “takes the concerns of all victims seriously and seeks to ensure all victims are treated with dignity and respect.

“An Garda Síochána does not comment on remarks by third parties or on the specifics of investigations conducted by other parties,” they said.

“It is also the policy of An Garda Síochána not to make detailed public comment on police investigations conducted in other jurisdictions.

“Specific enquiries in relation to the investigation into the 1996 London Docklands bombing should be directed to the Metropolitan Police.”

The Metropolitan Police have also being contacted for a response.

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