Sunday, March 16, 2008

Free the BBC 7!

Or something. Presumably this will soon be written off as an unfortunate misunderstanding --

Eleven men have been arrested by gardaí in Donegal as part of an ongoing investigation into paramilitary activity. Four men were arrested by gardaí this afternoon. Yesterday gardaí detained seven men aged between 30 years and 48 years.

The BBC has confirmed that some of its personnel are among the eleven people arrested by Gardai in Co Donegal as part of a probe into paramilitary activity. The BBC has said the journalists were working on a current affairs investigation in Northern Ireland and had full editorial authority under the broadcaster's guidelines.

On the face it sounds like the BBC NI team had a lead on a real IRA cell in Donegal but hadn't told the Garda what they were up to. Hopefully someone knew that Donegal is in the Republic, although the border signage is so low-key, it can be hard to tell. Of course, the BBC haters won't be able to resist headlines like "BBC staff arrested in terror investigation".

UPDATE: The team was from BBC NI's Spotlight.

FINAL UPDATE: They are free.

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