12.45pm – Two men have appeared in court charged with causing criminal damage to a US military aircraft at Shannon Airport this morning.
Dr Edward Horgan (71) of Newtown, Castletroy, Limerick and Dan Dowling (35) of Grace Dieu, Waterford City appeared at Ennis District Court this morning.
Speaking afterwards, Mr Horgan admitted he had entered the airport with the intention of searching two US Navy C-40 aircraft. He said he asked the Gardaí and Defence Forces to search the plane but didn’t know whether they did.
Both accused were released on bail with strict conditions attached and are due back in court on June 7th.
Earlier – Two men are due to appear in court today following an alleged incident of criminal damage at Shannon Airport last night.
It’s understood that the pair, aged 71 and 30, breached the airport perimeter and approached a US military aircraft on which they used a marker to write a number of slogans on the jet. The incident happened at around 10.35pm.
The men were intercepted and detained by Gardaí while members of the Defence Forces were also on security duty at the airport at the time.
The pair were arrested and taken to Shannon Garda Station for questioning.
Gardaí have confirmed that two men will appear before Ennis District Court later today to face charges of alleged criminal damage.
A spokesman also confirmed that no other damage was caused to the plane which was due to depart Shannon this morning.
US military aircraft and airport property have previously been targeted by peace activists using red paint.
In an incident last year, a red cross was painted on the runway at Shannon while slogans were also painted on an airport building. On that occasion, two men were arrested before they could reach any aircraft.
Anti-war groups remain opposed to the US military’s use of the airport as a refuelling stop and continue to hold monthly peace vigils at the airport.