Army technical officers at scene of gun find at Barnfield Road in Lisburn

Army technical officers at scene of gun find at Barnfield Road in Lisburn

TWO men arrested in a dissident terror probe have been charged with possession of a firearm in suspicious circumstances.

It followed an undercover police operation against dissident republican activity near Lisburn, Co Antrim.

The pair aged 32 and 24, who are from the Derriaghy area, are due to face Lisburn Magistrates’ Court on Monday morning.

They were arrested along with four other people during police raids on Thursday night and in the early hours of Friday morning.

Three men held in west Belfast and a woman detained in Dunmurry have since been released without charge.

The police operation was linked to a security alert in Barnfield Road, where a suspicious object was recovered by army bomb experts on Friday.

“Police can now confirm that a suspected firearm was recovered,” a PSNI spokesman said.

DUP MLA for Lagan Valley Jonathan Craig said that he had concerns over an active dissident cell which he claimed is operating in the Derriaghy, Twinbrook and Poleglass areas.

The Policing Board member said intelligence-led policing had been used to make the arrests and recover the weapon.

Leadership of dissident republicans 'highly suspicious' over arrests

Leadership of dissident republicans ‘highly suspicious’ over arrests

Belfast Daily revealed on Saturday that dissident republicans are said to be “highly suspicious” about the large number of arrests.

“The feeling is that the large number of arrests was designed to protect an informant,” said a dissident source.

“The consensus is that one of the three men a woman released is working for the police.

“We have seen this tactic from the police before. They bring a whole load of people in to keep the heat off their informant.

“Let’s just say the leadership are highly suspicious of what has gone on over the past couple of days,” added the source.





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