Sunday 25 February 2018

Sinn Féin under pressure to reveal more details on McCabe fugitives

'No information': Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams Picture: Tom Burke
'No information': Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams Picture: Tom Burke

Kevin Doyle and Alan O'Keeffe

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams has rejected allegations from the widow of Jerry McCabe that he is withholding information about the garda's murder.

Ann McCabe has said Mr Adams "lies through his teeth" when he talks about the brutal killing and those involved.

And Limerick County's three TDs last night said that the Sinn Féin president should outline every detail he knows about the robbery at Adare Post Office in 1996.

But Mr Adams said he had no information about the incident beyond what was already in the public domain.

He told the Irish Independent: "I have no information concerning those involved in the murder of Garda McCabe."

Kevin Walsh and Pearse McAuley both served prison sentences for manslaughter - but Mr Adams said he accepted Ms McCabe's assertion that his killing was a murder.

Asked if he was aware of witness intimidation at the time of their trial, Mr Adams replied: "I have no information of this. If witnesses were intimidated then I would be concerned."

Newly appointed Minister for Sport Patrick O'Donovan, who is a local TD, described the stance taken by Sinn Féin in relation to the garda killing as "intolerable".

"Sinn Féin has come from a situation where in 1996 they claimed there was no IRA involvement to accepting they helped organise and facilitate the attack.

"It's a painful experience to have taken that amount of time for Sinn Féin to admit this was basically the murder of a member of An Garda Síochána, who was just doing his job accompanying money to a Post Office for social welfare payments," Mr O'Donovan said.

"If there are people who know anything, they have an obligation to come forward, especially if they aspire to be in government."

Fianna Fáil's Niall Collins said: "Provisional Sinn Féin . . . compounded the offence by campaigning for his murderers' early release and celebrating" their release from prison.

"The weasel words of Sinn Féin over the years since the murder gave the country an insight into their thinking."

New Fine Gael TD for the area Tom Neville said Ann McCabe had "asked some very legitimate questions. The community has been on the side of truth and justice."

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald said it was an "appalling event" that "reminds us of the history of violence on our island".

Fianna Fáil's justice spokesman Jim O'Callaghan said: "The callousness of those garda killers is matched by their dishonesty and the dishonesty of their political supporters."

Irish Independent

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