Thursday 30 March 2017

Former IRA member: 'We all know that Gerry Adams was an extremely senior member of the IRA for years. Everybody knows it'

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams
Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams

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Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams was an "extremely senior member" of the IRA for many years, a former IRA member said.

Speaking on Newstalk's Pat Kenny Show in a pre-recorded interview that was broadcast this morning, former IRA member Sean O'Callaghan said he attended meetings of the IRA with Gerry Adams present.

Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams
Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams

He also claimed Adams will never admit to his membership as he would be jailed if he did.

"I'd been at IRA meetings with Gerry, and 90pc of people that were in the IRA were at IRA meetings with Gerry," O'Callaghan told the Newstalk broadcaster.

"Look if he admits to membership of the IRA tomorrow, he will be charged because there was no amnesty. They didn't get the deal they wanted.

"If Gerry admits to membership of the IRA... he will go to jail for it. That's why Martin McGuinness stops at '74. You know so he's not going to admit to it.

"But everybody knows. We all know that Gerry was an extremely senior member of the IRA for years. You know I've been at IRA meetings with him. Everybody knows it."

O'Callaghan is a former member of the Provisional IRA. He left the organisationin 1975, saying he was sickened by its brutality and sectarianism. In 1979, he rejoined. However, this time he was working voluntarily as an agent for gardai and did this until 1985 when he was forced to leave the country.

In 1988, he walked into an English police station and told them was he was involved with the IRA in the mid-70s, and was involved in the murder of two members of the security forces. He was sentenced to life imprisonment but released in 1996.

Continuing his interview, Pat Kenny said: "They [Sinn Fein] will say in response that Sean O'Callaghan, the informer, would say that anyway?"

O'Callaghan agreed before saying: "We all know what the score is. We all know what the score is in reality.

"Everybody does. The police, the dogs on the street in West Belfast, South Armagh, East Tyrone, everybody knows," he added.

The real subject for focus right now though, said O'Callaghan, is the funding he claims the party receives.

"The real key point is that... why... when are they going to get rid of the money that's particularly generated in South Armagh, knowing some of those people that money is not going into their own pockets. And there's enormous sums of money being generated.

"Now that's the real point people should be concentrating on in the Republic.

"I really believe that that's got to be stopped because that disadvantages every other political party and every other political voter.

Sean O'Callaghan was on the show primarily to discuss his new book 'James Connolly: My Search for the man, his myth and his legacy'.

His previous book was entitled: 'The Informer: The True Life Story of One Man's War on Terrorism'.

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