Terrorists jailed for gun attack on soldier

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Indy Politics
(First Edition)

Two men were each jailed for 25 years yesterday for attempting to murder a soldier in the Lower Falls area of Belfast.

Kevin McCann, 27, and Brendan McAnoy, 31, were convicted of shooting a soldier in the head with a shotgun while he was on patrol in Dunville Street in February last year.

Belfast Crown Court heard the soldier's helmet took the full impact of the shot and saved his life.

McAnoy and McCann were captured moments later in McCann's family home in nearby Lower Clonard Street, West Belfast, after another soldier spotted them running away.

The attack had been launched from a house in Dunville Street where a family of three had been held captive overnight.

Security forces found a shotgun beside a pair of step ladders, which had been used as a gun platform.

Mr Justice Pringle, jailing the pair, said that sentences for terrorist crime would 'go up and up' as long as terrorists failed to learn the lesson that their conduct could not and would not be tolerated.

McAnoy, who shouted 'Up the IRA' as he left the dock, and McCann were given concurrent jail terms ranging from 15 to 18 years for wounding the soldier, having the shotgun and holding the family hostage.