Today I lodged papers with the Police Ombudsman. Details will follow. Essentially, I contend that PIRA was so completely penetrated by the state in 1990 that the murders of my parents were the state’s responsibility. This the police failed to investigate. I have given details of the PIRA informers, whose names I know and I have asked the Ombudsman to examine all state files. The exercise has taken a year of my life, which I have gladly given, for my parents. Other events have given me this opportunity, which I failed to take for twenty four years. A number of people who treated me badly during that time and who gave me no support will have their own God to answer to. I thank those who have stood by me through all my travails for these years. I thank those from both communities, who, in the last twelve months have given me information and insight. The PSNI and the PPS failed to come up to the mark. Let’s see if the Ombudsman is hewn from different wood.
It is reported that Chief Supt. Nigel Grimshaw told the AGM of the Superintendents’ Association of NI that “we need to see the full implementation of strategies and policies which deal with those issues which continue to haunt us, parades , identities and in particular the past.”
He and his bosses would do the community and the past a great service by opening up the secret Special Branch files and confessing as to what is in them.
The concept that the identity or safety of paramilitary touts trumps the prosecution of those who should stand trial for the murder of innocent civilians is deeply wrong.
Of course the state could order the opening of the files or some Special Branch man, luxuriating in his Patton pension, topped up with further state work, could salve his conscience by telling the truth.
Come to think of it, there must be a few Branch men still left in the current PSNI high command, if Marty is right.
Some readers of this blog may have thought that I was uncharacteristically quiet. Worry not , Dear Reader, I have been working hard. I intend to publish, for the twenty fifth anniversary of the murder of my parents, a comprehensive analysis of those who ordered and carried out the act. Thereafter I intend to pursue them through the legal process. We will see, in time, how robust the PSNI and the legal system here really is. Until then audi, vide, tace.
Geraldine Finucane is reported as saying “gunmen were two-a-penny in Northern Ireland. They don’t interest me. I’m interested in the chain of command.’ If she did say that , I agree with her. I, too, on the ninetieth anniversary of my father’s birth, am interested in the chain of command that led to his murder and the murder of my mother.
The chain of command led from the ASU , through Spike Murray, Bobby Storey and Brian Gillen , to Martin McGuinness. At least one of this group and possibly more, were State agents.
The murder of Pat Finucane, whom I knew, is no more replete with State involvement than many murders in Northern Ireland. Paramilitary organisations were so heavily infiltrated by the late 1980s that the State had overall control of who lived and who died.
The line parroted by the police , that “there are no fresh evidential leads” is a barefaced lie in many cases.
What government in the West does not target the leaders of terrorist organisations? Consider the behaviour of the Americans and the Israelis. Does it not strike the ordinary citizen of Northern Ireland that not one senior terrorist leader was prosecuted after the 1970s?
I am sure that there is information, given by State agents, which would lead to the prosecution of many senior paramilitary figures. To blame, for example, the Republic of Ireland for withholding information on Kingsmills is a clever red herring, dangled by the British and swallowed by people like Wiilliam Frazer. The truth is sitting in British files.
It’s time to prise it free and do justice for all those killed by the State.
So far , of course, unlike the Finucane family I have not had the advantage of any inquiry.
On 11th August ACC Harris, as he then was said this , [in response to my assertion that Ed Moloney ,in his book”A Secret History of the IRA, pointed to McGuinness as the man who had ordered the murders of my parents] :
“The information contained within the book …is anonymous. The author Ed Moloney has previously been spoken to and is unwilling to disclose the identity of his sources.”
The police told the Senior Assistant Director of the PPS the same thing. He repeated to me: “Mr Moloney has previously been spoken to by police and was unwilling to disclose the identity of his sources.” The police were not briefing Mr Herron about interactions with Ed Moloney, they were dealing with a specific allegation.
Mr Moloney told me that no police officer had ever spoken to him about anything in his book, originally published in 2002.
I challenged the Chief Constable. He nodded the ball to ACC Kerr. He nodded the ball to D Supt Murphy, who seems to be in the Legacy Investigations Branch, probably the fourth or fifth outfit I have had to deal with. He replied :”ACC Harris previously wrote to you about interactions with Mr Moloney. In that letter , Mr Harris states that previous requests to Mr Moloney have not resulted in a positive response. I should emphasise that this was intended to reference other cases within the remit of the Historical Enquiries Team , rather than the murders of your parents specifically. I apologise if any confusion was caused.”
Of course ACC Harris did not write to me “about interactions with Mr Moloney”. He wrote to me about a specific allegation contained in a book written over twelve years ago.
Readers can make up their own mind about the honesty of the police responses.
It now appears that they are going to attempt to make contact with Mr Moloney.
The fact is that the police were ordered not to investigate the chain of command in any bombing or shooting. The ASU did not just have an idea one day that they would go and kill someone. It was scouted , planned and approved. In my parents’ case the project would have gone up the line through Spike Murray, Brian Gillen, Bobby Storey and then to McGuinness. At least two of these people were State informers, Gillen and McGuinness.
I therefore allege that the State was aware of the identity of the people who conspired to kill my parents , as well as the killers themselves. Effectively, the State was engaged in murder. This matter will now be taken up again with the PPS, though not with the Director, who was at all material times, McGuinness’s lawyer. I am not aware of whether or not he represented Spike Murray , Brian Gillen or Bobby Storey.
Meanwhile I still await the PSNI explanation about forensic examination of UCBTs, outstanding since 13th November.
Readers may recall that Ed Moloney took issue with the assertion by ACCs Harris and Kerr that they had spoken to him “previously” about his book “A secret History of the IRA”. A month has passed since I asked the Chief Constable to explain what is at least a contradiction. How long does it take either to provide some proof of contact with Mr Moloney or to apologise?
Readers will know that I intend to walk through my experience with the state in respect of the murders of my parents.
Today, my exposition is the failure of the PSNI to properly relate to those who correspond with them.
It seems that “personal, professional, protective policing” has been replaced , on the 2015 letter heading , with “keeping people safe”. I wonder why?
I’m told that only two police stations Musgrave and Strand Road are open though the night, I wonder if this is correct?
Anyway, chronologically, here are the officers I have dealt with in my quest for justice for my parents. It is important to know that I always wrote to the Chief Constable, most of who couldn’t be arsed replying personally , except for Hugh!
CC Hugh Orde!!!
D Ch S Hanna
ACC Harris [again!]
I think I’m going backwards again.
The FOI response, promised last week on forensics , has not materialised.
Blog by blog I will take you through the swamp that is supposedly the investigation of terrorist activity in Northern Ireland. Thousands of other crimes are presumably dealt with in a similar fashion , while one of the architects, McGuinness, is DFM.
You will be unsurprised to learn that I have had no explanation from the PSNI about their statement about Ed Moloney.
Usually, when one writes to the head of an organisation, complaining about those immediately under him, the head takes responsibility and responds. Not so the Chief Constable. On 17 December I wrote to him , setting out what ACC Harris and Kerr had said about Ed Moloney and his response. I asked the Chief Constable for an explanation and I told him how distressed I was at the prospect of having been misled [at best].
Well, he is not going to reply to me. Instead , guess what? The Chief Constable “believes that this matter is best addressed by ACC Kerr”. It will be interesting to see what he has to say for himself and for his superior, DCC Harris.
PS Still no word of explanation about the forensic examination of UCBs.
Next year I will deal, point by point , with the state’s cover up of McGuinness’ role and its refusal to prosecute him, despite evidence being available. I will be pressing the state for a prosecution for the murders of my parents.
I will also be pursuing the various pieces of evidence being withheld at present.
I will also set out how the PSNI in particular failed to respond properly to my requests. I have asked the Chief Constable for an explanation of the statements of Harris and Kerr regarding Ed Moloney.
Meantime , the issue of outstanding forensic evidence remains unresolved. I am promised a reply by early January, we will see.
I may well refer all these matters to the Police Ombudsman.
I will be availing of the offer of a meeting with the Attorney General.
My campaign goes on.
“In the midst of winter I finally learned that there was within me an invincible summer” Albert Camus.
My parents were killed by an under car booby trap bomb [UCBT], the sort of device that cowards use, [directed by Martin McGuinness], in the “war” where they couldn’t lawfully be shot, because it wasn’t a war, if you see what I mean.
I was told by ACC Harris that fifteen UCBTs were recovered intact. He informed me that as a result of a SCRT review, “a senior scientist has concluded that although the bombs were similar in their make up , they had subtle differences and could not be attributed to a single bomb maker.”
I asked Forensic Science Northern Ireland for a copy of the report. They replied, on 12 November:
“FSNI examined a number of devices during the period 1990 to 1992 however these were not correlated into any single report that we hold or have access to in our files”.
I wrote a FOI request to the police on the same day, asking
1. When the conclusion was reached by the “senior scientist”.
2. The name of the “senior scientist”.
3. The organisation for whom the “senior scientist” worked.
I also asked for a copy of the report which provided the basis for ACC Harris’s assertion
The PSNI say that “a response should be sent to you within twenty working days. Twenty eight working days later there is no reply, and no response to a follow up email to them. I am hoping, that this assertion by ACC Harris has more foundation than his statement about Ed Moloney.