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Coleraine mayor: shock after armaments found in grave plot

Police and CID officers at St John's Church graveyard in Coleraine

Police and CID officers at St John's Church graveyard in Coleraine

There has been bafflement at the discovery of an “old-style grenade” and two handguns in a Roman Catholic graveyard.

The mayor of Coleraine said there was no indication why they had come to be there, or for what purpose.

The security alert at the cemetery adjoining St John’s church off Laurel Hill Road ended shortly after 8am today, after having continued the whole of the previous night.

The Army carried out a controlled explosion where the objects were found.

The PSNI said the item was “believed to be an old style grenade,” and that “forensic officers have also removed two handguns and a quantity of ammunition”.

They had apparently been there for quite some time.

The alert unfolded at around 5pm on Tuesday when it was understood a gravedigger found the items while preparing a plot for an interment.

DUP mayor George Duddy said: “I would say people are probably shocked at the fact – probably none more so than the poor old gravedigger.”

He added: “They weren’t left there by accident. They’d been buried. Whoever left them there could be dead – or he forgot the exact spot.

“It’s like old treasure; it may be marked on the map as X, but when you go looking for X it might be somewhere different.”

 

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