Saturday 20 December 2014

Man arrested in connection to abduction and murder of Jean McConville

Published 18/03/2014 | 13:38

Helen McKendry, daughter of Jean McConville, with the only family photograph of her mother
Helen McKendry, daughter of Jean McConville, with the only family photograph of her mother
Jean McConville with three of her children shortly before her disappearance
Gardai using excavators conduct a search for the remains of murdered Belfast woman Jean McConville at Templetown beach car park in Co Louth
Gardai remove human remains close to the spot where the IRA claim they buried the body of Jean McConville near Templetown Beach, County Louth in August 2003
A family member carries a picture of murdered Belfast mother Jean McConville, while other unidentified family members carry her coffin into a family house in the small County Antrim village of Crumlin
Members of murdered Belfast woman Jean McConville's family pictured near the Co Louth beach where here remains were found

DETECTIVES investigating the abduction and murder of mother Jean McConville have arrested a 77-year-old man.

The suspect was arrested in west Belfast and has been taken to the serious crime suite at Antrim police station for questioning.

Mrs McConville, 37, a widow and mother of 10 children, was abducted from her flat in the Divis area of west Belfast and shot dead by the IRA in December 1972. The Provos who kidnapped her wrongly believed she was an informant.

A gang of 12, eight men and four women, are believed to have been involved in the abduction.

Her body was recovered on a beach in Co Louth in August 2003.

The horrific murder of Jean McConville has never been far from the limelight - and was highlighted further after a harrowing documentary 'The Disappeared' by award-winning journalist Darragh MacIntyre and renowned film-maker Alison Miller. This was broadcast last November and was co-produced by RTE and BBC.

The programme featured moving interviews with relatives of those killed and buried in secret graves by the IRA during the troubles.

The programme caused huge problems for Gerry Adams who has been linked to the disappearance of Jean McConville.

The Sinn Fein boss and Louth TD denied having anything to do with her death.

But his denials have been rejected by Ms McKendry.

"Gerry Adams can say what he likes. In my mind there is no doubt he gave the order to disappear my mother," she said.

After her kidnapping from the Divis flats, the widowed mum-of-ten was taken away in a van and driven to another house in west Belfast. There she was interrogated about being an informant.

It has since been alleged that IRA woman Dolours Price, who passed away in her Dublin home last summer, drove Ms McConville across the border into Co Louth.

Veteran republican Pat McClure, who is also dead, was also understood to be in the vehicle.

Mrs McConville was then shot in the head and buried on a beach in Co Louth.

Her remains were discovered by a member of the public in 2003 -- almost 30 years after she was kidnapped and executed.

Irish Independent

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