Friday 18 October 2019

Gerry Adams interviewed by gardaí probing the murder of prison officer

Brian Stack: Was gunned down as he left a boxing match in 1983
Brian Stack: Was gunned down as he left a boxing match in 1983

Philip Ryan and Tom Brady

Former Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams was interviewed by gardaí on his role in facilitating a meeting between murdered chief prison officer Brian Stack's sons and a senior Provisional IRA figure.

The revelation comes as Mr Stack's sons prepare to meet Garda Commissioner Drew Harris this morning to discuss the ongoing investigation into the brutal murder of their father by IRA terrorists.

Ahead of the meeting, Austin Stack issued a statement in which he said Mr Adams had been interviewed by gardaí.

A senior source last night confirmed Mr Adams was interviewed by appointment over his role in organising the meeting between the Stacks and a senior IRA figure who had knowledge of their father's murder.

The well-placed source said Mr Adams was not treated as a suspect but rather as a witness who could help with the three-decade-old unsolved murder. The interview took place over a year ago.

Sinn Féin did not respond to requests for comment last night.

Brian Stack was gunned down as he left an amateur boxing match in the National Stadium in Dublin in March, 1983. He died of his injuries 18 months later.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, Austin Stack said his family would be seeking a full apology from Commissioner Harris over the mishandling of the original Garda investigation into his father's murder.

"We will be expecting a full, meaningful and sincere apology for the mishandling of the original investigation into our father's murder," he said.

Mr Stack's wife Shelia and her other two sons Oliver and Kieran will also attend.

In 2013 Mr Adams facilitated a meeting between Austin and Oliver Stack and a senior IRA figure who gave the brothers a statement on the murder.

The terrorist told them the murder had not been sanctioned by the IRA leadership and claimed those involved had been disciplined by the terror organisation.

Austin Stack and Mr Adams later gave differing accounts of what was said.

Mr Adams has always insisted he knows nothing more about the circumstances surrounding the 1983 shooting than what was contained in the IRA statement acknowledging that the Provisionals were responsible.

He has previously said that he would be prepared to cooperate with any investigation into the murder.

The Irish Independent previously revealed Mr Adams forwarded to gardaí the names of four people he was told may have been involved in the murder. Mr Adams claimed he had been given the names by Austin Stack. However, Mr Stack insisted he never gave any names to Mr Adams.

Irish Independent

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Also in this section