Irish News

Wednesday 30 July 2014

PSNI arrest Gerry Adams as part of Jean McConville murder investigation

Published 30/04/2014|20:59

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Sinn Fein Leader Gerry Adams. Photo: Damien Eagers
Sinn Fein Leader Gerry Adams. Photo: Damien Eagers

SINN Fein leader Gerry Adams was this evening arrested by PSNI officers investigating the murder of Jean McConville.

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Mr Adams, who has vehemently rejected the allegations made by former republican colleagues that he had a role in ordering the notorious IRA killing in 1972, voluntarily presented himself for interview at a police station in Antrim.

No one has ever been charged with the murder. But after years without progress in the criminal investigation there have been a series of arrests in recent weeks.

A veteran republican - 77-year-old Ivor Bell - was charged last month with aiding and abetting the murder.

In the wake of the recent developments in the case, last month Mr Adams, who has always denied membership of the IRA, said he would be available to meet with detectives if they wished to speak with him.

Mr Adams released a statement this evening revealing the meeting with officers.

“Last month I said that I was available to meet the PSNI about the Jean McConville case.

"While I have concerns about the timing, I am voluntarily meeting with the PSNI this evening", he said.

“As a republican leader I have never shirked my responsibility to build the peace. This includes dealing with the difficult issue of victims and their families.

"Insofar as it is possible I have worked to bring closure to victims and their families who have contacted me. Even though they may not agree, this includes the family of Jean McConville.

“I believe that the killing of Jean McConville and the secret burial of her body was wrong and a grievous injustice to her and her family.

“Well publicised, malicious allegations have been made against me. I reject these.

“While I have never disassociated myself from the IRA and I never will, I am innocent of any part in the abduction, killing or burial of Mrs McConville.

“Sinn Féin has signed up to the Haass proposals for dealing with the past. While I also respect the right of families if they wish to seek legal redress there remains a huge onus on the two governments and the political parties to face up to all these issues and to agree a victim centred process which does this.”

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