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Last Updated: Friday, 8 December 2006, 11:49 GMT
Go ahead given for kidnap trial
Maze Prison
Brendan McFarlane escaped from the Maze Prison in 1983
The Dublin High Court has given the go ahead for the trial of Brendan 'Bik' McFarlane in connection with kidnapping supermarket executive Don Tidey.

Mr Justice John Quirke gave his decision in a reserved judgment on a judicial review granted to McFarlane to challenge his trial going ahead.

McFarlane from north Belfast has been on bail since 1998 accused of falsely imprisoning Mr Tidey in 1983.

McFarlane was one of 38 IRA prisoners who escaped from the Maze jail in 1983.

He was later caught in Amsterdam and extradited to Northern Ireland.

He was released on parole from the Maze in 1997.

McFarlane was arrested by gardai in 1998 and charged with the unlawful possession of a firearm and falsely imprisoning supermarket chief executive Don Tidy near Ballinamore, County Leitrim in 1983.

However, his trial collapsed after gardai lost items including a milk carton, a plastic container and a cooking pot - all of which, it was claimed, had his fingerprints on them.

The Director of Public Prosecutions appealed that decision and in March the Supreme Court ruled that the former IRA member should face a retrial.

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