Sunday 4 December 2016

Jim Cusack: Grudge 'at the root of Finucane murder'

Published 16/12/2012 | 05:00

A report by Sir Desmond de Silva on the 'shocking' collusion behind the Belfast solicitor's killing still does not fully explain the reasoning of loyalists in targeting him.

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BEFORE he moved to the family home where he was murdered, Pat Finucane lived across the street from a pub frequented by leading members of the north Belfast Ulster Defence Association, the loyalist organisation which assassinated him. When he lived with his then young family in a terraced house in Charnwood Avenue, off the Cavehill Road, it would have been a simple matter for the UDA to cross the street to murder him. At the time he was already suspected by loyalists of being close to the IRA leadership – he had been appointed to take over the legal affairs of the IRA hunger strikers including Bobby Sands in 1981.

Yet he continued to live untouched in the house near the pub which was visited almost daily by the UDA north Belfast commander, Sammy Duddy, who died in 2007. Duddy occasionally mentioned his suspicions about Pat Finucane to journalists and was very well aware of his domestic arrangements. As a young parent, Finucane had a dangerously regular routine, often doing the shopping on Saturday mornings, with his young children. And yet, no murder attempt was made or, apparently, even contemplated at this very vulnerable time in his life.

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