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.