Sunday 17 December 2017

Editorial: Adams needs to address concerns over sex case

Gerry Adams
Gerry Adams

NEWS that the Police Ombudsman in the North is investigating a complaint that Gerry Adams was briefed by police on details of the case against his paedophile brother is a matter of grave concern. The main point is that this police briefing is alleged to have occurred before the Sinn Fein president gave evidence against Liam Adams at his first trial in 2013. It is also alleged that a policeman discussed the case at a public meeting.

Liam Adams was convicted last year of committing a series of heinous sexual assaults against his own daughter when she was aged between four and nine years of age in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The attacks on Aine Dahlstrom caused widespread revulsion and disquiet. The case also raised a series of disturbing questions about Gerry Adams's response to the young woman who had sought his support and help. The Ombudsman is already carrying out a separate investigation into Gerry Adams's handling of the matter and whether his actions were properly investigated by police.

If these complaints are upheld they could be an issue in Liam Adams's expected appeal against his conviction and an eight-year jail sentence. News of this Ombudsman's investigation comes just 10 days after Mr Adams was released from custody in Belfast following four days of detention and questioning about the 1972 abduction and murder of widowed mother of 10 children, Jean McConville.

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