Feature

Irishmen cleared

The week's news at a glance.

Bogotá

A judge this week acquitted three suspected Irish Republican Army members of charges that they showed Colombian rebels how to make better bombs. The men—James Monaghan, Niall Connolly, and Martin McCauley—were arrested three years ago, leaving a rebel stronghold in the jungle. They maintained they were only there “to get to know the people, the natural beauty, and the peace process.” The arrests sparked accusations that the IRA was exporting violence, but Irish politicians and other supporters rallied to their side. The men were convicted of traveling with false passports, but their sentences were shorter than the time already spent in jail, so the judge ordered them freed once they had paid $6,500 fines. Prosecutors said they would appeal.

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