Pipe bomb charge accused Sean Megaw granted bail

Sean Megaw was arrested in January 2014
Sean Megaw was arrested in January 2014

A 27-year-old man accused of having a pipe bomb which was seized during a police operation in west Belfast last year was granted bail on Friday.

Saying that he was releasing Sean Megaw with “some reservation”, Judge Gordon Kerr QC told the accused he must adhere to a number of strict conditions which included being tagged.

Megaw, a father of two from Mount Eagles Square in Dunmurry, was one of two men arrested during the police operation in the Lagmore area of west Belfast in January 2014.

The pair were arrested following the discovery of a pipe bomb, and were subsequently charged with posesssing explosives with intent to endanger life, and possessing explosives under suspicious circumstances, on January 31, 2014.

Both Megaw and co-acccused Sean Gerard Ruddy, 29, from Burren Meadow in Newcastle, have denied the charges and are due to stand trial later this year.

Crown prosecutor Kate McKay told Belfast Crown Court that Ruddy was granted bail in April of this year.

She also revealed that police had concerns about releasing Megaw on bail due to a previous conviction for a similar offence. This previous offence, she said, had prompted police fears of re-offending.

Pointing out that Megaw has been in custody since his arrest at the end of January 2014, defence barrister Joe Brolly said Megaw “was not associating with any paramilitaries in prison” and was on remand “in the normal prison population” as opposed to the dissident wing.

Mr Brolly asked that Megaw be bailed to live in his girlfriend’s house in the Donegall Road area of Belfast.

Judge Kerr said bail would only be granted if the PSNI approved his girlfriend’s address.