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Sunday 24 September 2017

Stack calls on gardaí to question Adams on father's murder

Austin Stack. Photo: Tom Burke
Austin Stack. Photo: Tom Burke
Philip Ryan

Philip Ryan

The son of murdered prison officer Brian Stack said it was "scandalous" that Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams had not been questioned by gardaí about the brutal killing.

The Irish Independent recently revealed Mr Adams last year sent an email to Garda Commissioner Nóirin O'Sullivan naming Sinn Féin members who may have information on Mr Stack's murder.

It has since emerged gardaí plan to question Mr Adams about the names he claimed he received from Mr Stack's son Austin. Austin Stack has categorically denied he gave the names to Mr Adams.

Speaking before a meeting with Taoiseach Enda Kenny, Mr Stack said he was concerned Mr Adams had not been questioned by gardaí at this stage.

After the meeting with the Taoiseach, Mr Stack and his family said they received assurances from Mr Kenny and Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald about concerns they had.

Brian Stack's wife Sheila said her husband "served the State to the best of his ability but the State has let him down".

She said Mr Adams is "concealing information" and asked him to do "the honourable thing" so she and her family could have closure.

TDs Martin Ferris and Dessie Ellis were named in Mr Adams' letter to Garda Headquarters.

Mr Stack said he had no information suggesting Mr Ellis knew anything about his father's murder but said Mr Ferris was questioned by gardaí.

He also said Mr Ferris was a "lead operative in the IRA" at the time of the murder.

"Martin Ferris is an individual who wrote scandalous and very hurtful things about my father and then went on Radio Kerry and described the prison management in Portlaoise as Nazis," Mr Stack said.

"I received confidential information in the last couple of weeks that would suggest to me that the only people who were brutal in Portlaoise Prison at the time was the officer-commanding of the IRA who brutally beat and had beaten the younger IRA prisoners at the time," he added.

Mr Stack also read out a statement detailing the events leading up to Mr Adams bringing him to meet a senior IRA figure who told him and his brother Oliver that the terrorist group was responsible for their father's murder.

Mr Adams has until now refused to reveal the name of the IRA figure. Mr Stack said details of the meeting read into the Dáil record by Mr Adams were inaccurate.

He said the family refused to issue a statement calling for no prosecutions for their father's murder despite a request from Mr Adams.

He said it was misleading to suggest that the meeting arranged by Mr Adams was part of the peace process.

The Sinn Féin leader last night said he would co-operate with gardaí.

Irish Independent

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