In 1973 I was working in Dublin and Cork for Irish Helicopters. In October there was a job for our Dublin based Alouette 2. The helicopter had been hired by an American two days previously for what was believed to be a photographic session in Stradbally, Co. Laois. Having landed at Stradbally, the helicopter was immediately surrounded by a number of armed men. The American, Mr. Leonard, was asked to get out of the helicopter and one of the armed men took his place. The pilot was then forced to fly to Mountjoy Prison to pick three IRA prisoners and then on to Baldoyle racecourse, where the three IRA prisoners and the fourth man got into a car and headed in the direction of Howth, Co. Dublin.
RTE Video and report
The Wolfe Tones clebrated the escape with this single release shortly afterwards:
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