Reported in the News Letter on August 15, 1955: Irish gang steals guns and ammunition in raid on British Army camp

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A military court will meet today or tomorrow to inquire into the raid on an Army camp at Arborfield (Berkshire) on Saturday [August 13], when an armed gang of Irishmen made off with a large haul of guns and ammunition.

The search continued yesterday for the gang, and police are looking for a van the men used. In Belfast, police scrutinised every passenger leaving ships from Liverpool and Heysham.

Mr G B Hanna, Northern Ireland Minister of Home Affairs, told the “Belfast News Letter” last night that it was now time for the Governments in Britain and Eire to have discussions, “because these people are given protection in Eire”.

“We have been pressing, and I think England has been pressing too, for extradition arrangements and stricter security measures in the South to try to prevent the recruiting and training of men there. Nothing seems to have happened.”

In the raid on Saturday, the gang, which the War Office said was of Irishmen, overpowered the sentry, whose only weapon was a pick axe handle, and then overpowered the rest of the guards, some of whom were sleeping between turns of duty.

They stole 55 Sten guns, 10 Bren guns, two rifles, one pistol and 80,600 rounds of ammunition.