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City bombing witnesses 'threatened'

TWO KEY witnesses have withdrawn their evidence against members of an IRA terrorist gang believed to have carried out the Baltic Exchange bombing in the City of London two years ago.

However, police have refused to comment on a newspaper report which said the middle-aged couple would have been able to identify two of the gang in court, but intimidation had made them fear for their lives and they now refuse to testify in the case.

The Sunday Times claimed yesterday that the two suspects are in jail for separate offences in Northern Ireland and are due to be released this summer.

Three people died, 91 were injured and pounds 600m damage done when a one- tonne fertiliser bomb exploded in a van parked outside the Baltic Exchange in the City of London in April 1992. The report said police traced the couple from the chassis number on the engine of the van. They signed detailed statements describing how they unwittingly sold the white Ford Transit to two Irishmen on the day of the bombing. They began receiving telephone deaths threats soon after the attack and now 'just don't want to know'.