PSNI probe into bomb attacks ongoing

ATO at the security alert in Banagher.
ATO at the security alert in Banagher.

A senior PSNI officer has said officers investigating three bomb attacks in the last month in the Roe Valley are hopeful of a breakthrough.

Superintendent John Magill said investigations into the Drumsurm, Banagher and Dungiven incidents are being taken forward by detectives from the Crime Operations Department.

“I am regular contact with my colleagues and they assure me the investigations are making progress,” he said.

“The incidents were very serious, where people set about to deliberately cause serious injury to members of the community and, as I’ve said before, anyone who would have been in the vicinity of one of those devices, had it exploded, would have been killed or very seriously injured.”

Supt. Magill declined to go into specific details of the investigation, other than to say officers were looking at “forensic opportunities and that will take its time to come to fruition, but I am hopeful we will get the breaththrough, the lead that we need”.

Supt. Magill said a strong line of enquiry is that those involved are from the Derry area.

“It’s always worrying when you have people planting these deadly devices, which could cause harm or death so, yes, it is a worry for me and the community in general. The community is saying ‘we don’t want these attacks, there is no place for them in society’ and they want the people planting them to desist and stop carrying out these attacks.”

Supt. Magill said previously police are following “a strong line of enquiry the bombs planted in Drumsurn, Banagher and Dungiven are linked, and have been carried out by the same group”.

Republican group Óglaigh na hÉireann claimed it had left the bomb in Drumsurn.

The three incidents sparked security alerts that lasted several days, closed roads and forced the evacuation of local residents from their homes.

Local politicians, residents and church leaders condemned the incidents.