Bomb attack accused refused permission to attend suspect’s wedding

Pacemaker Press 22/5/2013  Laganside Court Building  in Belfast City centre  Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 22/5/2013 Laganside Court Building in Belfast City centre Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

A man accused of trying to blow up a Catholic police officer has failed in a High Court bid to be allowed to attend the wedding of another suspect.

Gavin Coyle, 39, wanted a ban on any contact with the groom temporarily lifted so he could be at the forthcoming ceremony.

But prosecutors opposed the move, claiming information could be passed to a man still under investigation in connection with the car bomb attack in Castlederg, Co Tyrone back in May 2008.

Refusing the application, Mr Justice Treacy said: “There are good reasons advanced by the conditions should not be relaxed.”

Coyle, formerly of Culmore Park in Omagh, faces charges of attempted murder, causing an explosion likely to endanger life, and membership of the IRA.

He was arrested in December 2015 by detectives investigating the bombing.

The officer was driving from his home when a bomb exploded under his car at Spamount, near Castlederg.

He suffered serious leg injuries and was dragged away from the wreckage shortly before it burst into flames.

A previous court was told the decision to charge Coyle was taken after examination of a covert recording of a meeting he allegedly attended.

He has been on bail for more than a year, on conditions including no contact with another named individual.

Defence counsel Sean Devine confirmed today Coyle was seeking permission to attend that man’s wedding.

But Crown lawyer Natalie Pinkerton argued that the groom, who is currently not charged with offences connected to the attack, has a “relevant record”.

She added: “There would be an objection in relation to the possibility that any information provided to the defence could be disclosed to (the man) who is still a suspect in this matter.”

Despite the defence stressing the limited extent of the application, Mr Justice Treacy ruled the ban must remain in place.

He said: “I’m not prepared to remove the condition... he remains a suspect in the case.”