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Secret Government Files – Protecting National Security or Hiding National Shame

Spotlight NI tonight (8th December 2015) investigates whether secret government files are hidden because of British national security or shame regarding Britain’s dirty war in the north of Ireland. The investigation features brave families whose loved ones were killed during the conflict, but whose stories have been covered up by the state for generations. They include the […]

Loyalists and Loyal Police Force?

Not even the British Joint Intelligence Committee knew the difference it seems as the top brass looked over their other shoulders at Loyalist extremists and the RUC police force.   Below is an archive compiled in March 1972 as the Stormont regime crumbled. The British wanted to distinguish between Loyalist extremists AND the attitudes of […]

HET – How Little Has Changed

Last night I attended an information-sharing event in the Balmoral Hotel hosted by Relatives for Justice and attended by families whose loved ones were murdered during “the Troubles”. Specifically, under discussion – if not close scrutiny – were the Historical Enquiries Team (HET), the Office of the Police Ombudsman (OPONI) and inquests. Experiences with these as […]

New Police Service, Old Story

Today is the 10th anniversary of the murder of North Belfast teenager, Gerard Lawlor, who was shot in the back as he walked home from the Bellevue Arms. He was shot for no other reason than he was a Catholic and he was a defenceless target. His killers were never charged even though their names […]

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Press Release: CJI to investigate how PSNI deals with Ombudsman Findings

The Policing Board is to ask the Criminal Justice Inspectorate (CJI) “to carry out an investigation which will examine the relationship between the PSNI and the Police Ombudsman” following a complaint against the Chief Constable lodged on behalf of two NGOs, British Irish Rights Watch and the Pat Finucane Centre. The two Human Rights organisations had […]

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Families Demand To See Original McGurk’s Report

Below is piece by myself that featured in an article by Kieran Hughes in the North Belfast News (17th September 2011). Last Thursday (8th September 2011) some of the McGurk’s campaigners visited Stormont to hear what the Police Ombudsman, Al Hutchinson, had to say for himself in front of the Justice Committee. He was answering damning criticisms from […]

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Press Release: McGurk’s Families Attend Assembly Justice Committee

The families of those killed in the McGurk’s Bar Massacre of December 1971 are to attend today’s hearing of the Assembly Justice Committee at Stormont. The Justice Committee will be questioning the Police Ombudsman, Al Hutchinson following a report by Michael Maguire from the Criminal Justice Inspectorate into the running of the Police Ombudman’s Office. […]

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Leaks, Sneaks and Corporate Memory

This features in an article by Gemma Burns of the North Belfast News 18th August 2011. I will link the full article when it is online. It regards the “leak” of the Criminal Justice Inspection report into the “independence” of the office of Police Ombudsman and the influence of those it investigates. Only in a Kafka novel or Northern […]

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Gerry Kelly, Sinn Féin, and the PONI Malady

Below is a press release by Gerry Kelly, Sinn Féin MLA for North Belfast. He is party spokesman for Policing and Justice. He sits on the Policing Board which holds the police accountable – unlike the Police Ombudsman’s office it seems. Commenting after leaks of the Criminal Justice Inspectorate Report into the operation of the […]

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