PSNI warns dissidents have developed new type of bomb

It is believed the bomb was used to target an off-duty officer in Derry in February

PSNI warns dissidents have developed new type of bomb

Under Vehicle Improvised Explosive Device discovered at a PSNI officers home, 22-02-2017. Image: PSNI

Police in Northern Ireland say the New IRA has developed a different kind of bomb which could be highly dangerous.

It involves a pressure plate that detonates a device when a car passes over it. 

It was used when dissident republicans targeted an off-duty officer in Derry in February.

Detectives are making a renewed appeal regarding the attack – after linking it to a previous incident in Ballyarnett Village in the county three years ago.

Detective Superintendent John McVea said police believe unsubstantiated reports of a burglary and subsequent bomb warning in the village on October 13th 2014 were a deliberate attempt to lure officers to the area to murder them.

Victim operated pressure plate. Image: PSNI

“We believe the New IRA is responsible for both attacks,” he said. “I can also confirm that the same type of pressure plate device was used on both occasions.”

“These types of devices are designed to murder and seriously injure people. If this UVIED had exploded with our colleague and his young family in the car earlier this year it would have had devastating consequences.

“I am thankful this was not the case.”

The PSNI has renewed its call for information regarding a “light coloured car, understood to be a Toyota Avensis” which was in the Ardanlee area of Derry on Tuesday 21st February.

PSNI appeal for any information regarding the above car

“We have been unable to identify the driver or occupants and I would ask the owner of a car, in the CCTV image to come forward to police or indeed anyone who can provide information about it,” he said.

He warned that the violent dissidents who carried targeted the officer, “did indeed intend to kill him and didn’t care that his children or partner could also have been in the vehicle with him at the time.”

He said it is “plain to see” that the dissidents “have no regard for the safety of the local community.”

“They put everyone’s safety at risk as these viable devices were left in residential areas and could have exploded at any time.

“I believe there are still people in these communities who hold vital pieces of information that can assist us.”

The PSNI are calling for anyone who saw anything unusual in the Ardanlee area between 5pm on Tuesday 21st February and 7am on Wednesday 22nd to contact them.

Anyone who may have witnessed any suspicious activity or vehicles in the Ballyarnett area of Derry on Sunday 12th October 2014 is also urged to get in contact.