44-year-old Derry man jailed for 13 years for PSNI station bomb attempt

A 44-year-old man who admitted playing an 'active role' in a dissident bomb attack at a Derry PSNI station has been jailed for 13 years.

Ordering that Philip O'Donnell spend half his sentence in jail and half on licence, Belfast Crown Court judge Mr Justice Burgess said that had O'Donnell been a primary party in the bomb attack on Strand Road PSNI station, he would have faced a sentence in excess of 20 years.

The Judge said that given the nature of the offences and the terror and threat to life in the attack, the dissident group showed itself only too willing to resort to violence in pursuit of its aims and in doing so resorted to this highly dangerous act of causing an explosion of this magnitude.

Earlier, Mr Justice Burgess heard that O'Donnell, acting on behalf of Óglaigh na hÉireann, lured a taxi driver to the Brandywell area of Derry where he was hijacked by two gunmen and ordered to take a 200lb bomb to the police station in August 2010.

He also heard that O'Donnell, from Baldrick Court in Derry, telephoned a 45 minute warning but only half of that warning had expired when the bomb went off.