Federal Grand Jury Indicts Five in IRA Bomb Plot
BOSTON (AP) _ Five people accused of working to develop anti-helicopter missiles for the Irish Republican Army were indicted Thursday on federal charges of conspiring to violate regulations on arms exports.
Investigators say the five, including a computer scientist, were working for the Provisional IRA, the guerilla wing of the nationalist group fighting to end British rule in Northern Ireland.
Following the arrests of three of the defendants in July, the FBI seized radar and missile parts ″in various stages of development or manufacture″ during raids in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, according to FBI agent James F. Ahearn.
The indictment listed 59 alleged violations of the federal Arms Export Control Act. The list was compiled through FBI investigations, interviews with the suspects and telephone taps.
It charged that the five conspired to ″export illegally to the Republic of Ireland defense articles and services, and related technical data, components, parts and accessories.″
The three arrested were electrical engineer Richard Clark Johnson, Irishman Martin Peter Quigley, and electrical engineering student Christina Leigh Reid.
Johnson, in his parents’ custody in Harwich, is charged with developing for export ″remote control detonation systems to facilitate a bombing campaign directed against military and civilian targets in Northern Ireland and elsewhere.″
Quigley and another Irishman, Peter Eamon Maguire, are accused of collaborating with Johnson to develop and export the rocket systems.
Maguire remains at large and is believed to be in Ireland. Quigley, who lived in Bethlehem, Pa., has been held without bail since his arrest, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Stearns.
Gerald Vincent Hoy, a computer scientist and Penn State lecturer from Easton, Penn., allegedly worked with Quigley to ″develop, test and export a missile and rocket system to be used against British Army helicopters″ in Northern Ireland. A summons was issued for him to surrender, Stearns said.
Ms. Reid, from Sunnyvale, Calif., allegedly agreed to act as a courier between Johnson, Quigley and Maguire. She is free on $10,000 bail after a hearing last month in San Francisco and has been ordered to appear in Boston on Aug. 22.