Cross-border probe into attempt to kill police officer in Belfast

Police have launched an investigation straddling the Irish border into a dissident republican attempt to kill an officer.

A “sophisticated” bomb was placed under the man’s vehicle and discovered at Shandon Park Golf Club in East Belfast on Saturday. He was left badly shaken.

Detectives from the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) want to trace a Dublin-registered green Skoda Octavia and are working with their counterparts in the Republic.

They said if the device had exploded it would have caused death or serious injury.

Assistant chief constable George Clarke said: “We are extraordinarily fortunate that we are not talking about the murder of a police officer, of members of his family or members of the public passing a bomb that has been planted recklessly, cruelly and viciously under his motor car.

“The attempt to murder a police officer is an attempt to murder a public servant.

“I cannot understand what cause is advanced by attempting to murder a man who day in, day out seeks to serve his community.”

The club, with at least 70 people present, was evacuated after staff were alerted on Saturday afternoon.

Police want dashcam footage or other information about two vehicles which may have been seen by members of the public in the area between 10pm on Friday and 7.30am on Saturday.

They include the Skoda and a Northern Ireland-registered silver Saab.