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Family of murdered Paul Quinn want Gerry Adams to apologise

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Stephen and Breege Quinn at their son Paul’s graveside (Liam McBurney/PA)

Stephen and Breege Quinn at their son Paul’s graveside (Liam McBurney/PA)

Stephen and Breege Quinn at their son Paul’s graveside (Liam McBurney/PA)

THE family of Paul Quinn want former Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams to apologise for remarks that suggested the murdered 21-year-old was involved in criminality.

Meanwhile, the young man's mother Breege Quinn said she was left disappointed by a phone call she had with the party's current leader Mary Lou McDonald this evening.

She said Ms McDonald offered her no commitment that another senior Sinn Féin politician - Conor Murphy - would explicitly say her son was not a criminal.

Sinn Féin's treatment of the Quinn family has become a major controversy in the closing days of the election campaign after Ms McDonald was confronted on the issue on RTÉ earlier this week.

Sinn Fein minister Conor Murphy has apologised for claiming an IRA murder victim was a criminal. Paul Quinn's murder has become a major issue in the General Election campaign, with rivals highlighting Sinn Fein's IRA links and accusing it of being soft on crime.

Mr Quinn was beaten to death in 2007.

Every bone in his body was broken in the horrific attack by a gang that's believed to have included members of the IRA.

Mr Murphy has apologised and withdrawn his comments he made in 2007 when he claimed that Mr Quinn was "involved in smuggling and criminality".

But Ms Quinn this evening told Independent.ie that the family still want him to say the words: "Paul Quinn is not a criminal".

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Stephen and Breege Quinn at the graveside of their murdered son Paul (Liam McBurney/PA)

Stephen and Breege Quinn at the graveside of their murdered son Paul (Liam McBurney/PA)

Meanwhile, she said they want Mr Adams to apologise for similar comments he made shortly after her son's death.

Mr Adams claimed in October 2007 that there was "no republican involvement whatsoever in this man's murder.

"The people involved are criminals. They need to be brought to justice."

He also claimed: "It's fairly obvious to me this is linked to fuel smuggling and to criminal activity."

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Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy, Michelle O’Neill, Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald at Leinster House ahead of a meeting about powersharing last night. Photo: PA

Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy, Michelle O’Neill, Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald at Leinster House ahead of a meeting about powersharing last night. Photo: PA

PA

Ms Quinn said the family is asking Mr Adams to apologise for this remark.

She said that Ms McDonald shouldn't have to ask him to do that adding: "He was the leader of the party.

“He’s a big enough man to come out and say it without having to be asked. He’s no child."

Ms Quinn said Ms McDonald offered her no commitment that Mr Murphy would say in clear terms that her son was not a criminal.

She said: "I know he apologised for what he put us through for the past 13 years… but he didn’t say that Paul wasn’t a criminal.

"She said she’d be talking to him but no matter how much I pressed her on it she didn’t say that he would say those words."

Ms Quinn said she found Ms McDonald "nice to speak" to in the phone call and they had a "mother-to-mother conversation".

However, she was left disappointed that she had not offered that commitment.

She said that Ms McDonald told her Mr Murphy's apology was "truthful and sincere".

"I said 'yes but he still didn’t say the words we need to hear.'"

Sinn Féin has been contacted for comment but didn't immediately respond.

Online Editors


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