Midweek Sport - - NEWS -

MARTIN FO­LEY and his part­ner Pauline Quinn were asleep in Fo­ley’s house when there was a knock on the door.

Fo­ley’s older brother Do­minic went down­stairs and looked through the peep­hole of the front door. He saw what looked like a post­man out­side and, think­ing he must have a pack­age, opened the door.

In­stead of de­liv­er­ing a par­cel, the fake post­man stuck a gun in Do­minic’s chest and forced his way into the house.

Three masked men rushed in. They said they were from the IRA and were there to de­liver a mes­sage to The Viper.

The in­trud­ers asked Do­minic which room his brother was in and two mem­bers of the ac­tive ser­vice unit ran up the stairs.

Fo­ley was a light sleeper and had been wo­ken by the com­mo­tion.

He got up and went to the bed­room door, where he was con­fronted by a masked man car­ry­ing a sawn-off shot­gun.

Fo­ley was a skilled fighter; he knew the man wasn’t there to make him break­fast so he went for him, grab­bing the bar­rel of the gun.

The pair strug­gled as the other three Provos re­alised some­thing was up and rushed to help their col­league.

The three men beat Fo­ley with a ba­ton and a shot­gun and pushed him onto the bed. A gun was pushed into Fo­ley’s face while Pauline cow­ered in the cor­ner of the room.

One of the men tried to hand­cuff Fo­ley. The Viper knew he was about to be kid­napped, so he made a bid for free­dom. He jumped off the bed and punched his as­sailant.

The ter­ror­ists re­sponded by giv­ing Fo­ley a hid­ing and man­aged to sub­due him on the bed, where he was even­tu­ally cuffed.

This wasn’t the end of Fo­ley’s fight­ing spirit, though. He man­aged to wrig­gle free and run out to­wards the stairs.

Fo­ley landed in a heap at the bot­tom and was dragged into the kitchen and dumped on the floor.

The in­trud­ers wrapped duct tape around his legs and over his eyes and mouth so that he couldn’t move, see or talk.

He was then wrapped in a pink blan­ket and bun­dled into a green van that was parked out­side.

As the van left Cashel Av­enue, one kid­nap­per pushed a gun into Fo­ley’s face and told him: “If you don’t stay quiet I’ll blow the f***ing head off you.”

What the gang didn’t know was a neigh­bour hap­pened to be look­ing out his win­dow. He di­alled 999 and gave a de­scrip­tion of the van. Soon ev­ery po­lice of­fi­cer in the city was on high alert.

As the van trav­elled down the Crum­lin Road, a pass­ing squad car spot­ted it.

The cops de­cided to make their move.

An­other Garda car ar­rived and at­tempted to block the van, but the driver mounted the pave­ment. The Provos had de­cided there would be no sur­ren­der.

One of the pur­su­ing cars drove up along­side the speed­ing van, but one of the masked men aimed a hand­gun at it and fired sev­eral shots.

The van turned onto Welling­ton Road but the Garda had set up a road­block and the four IRA men were forced to jump out.

They tried to carry Fo­ley, but there was no way he was go­ing to al­low this to hap­pen.

Fo­ley was res­cued and put into the back of a po­lice car to re­cover. He had a frac­tured jaw and cuts and bruises, but he was oth­er­wise un­hurt.

Later he hap­pily picked out his four kid­nap­pers from an iden­tity parade. He was ob­vi­ously fired up be­cause he tried to at­tack one of the men.

The ar­rested Provos must have been ter­ri­fied of Fo­ley, con­sid­er­ing he had nearly got the bet­ter of the four of them.

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