Thursday 14 December 2017

How we saved Johnny Adair

Sean Hartnett was deeply uncomfortable about his involvement in an operation to save the life of Johnny 'Mad Dog' Adair. Adair was one of the most notorious loyalist terrorists of the Troubles. In 2002, he was expelled from the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) after a violent feud.

Johnny "Mad Dog" Adair. Photo: PA

In Autumn 2002 there was solid intelligence that an attempt was to be made on Johnny Adair's life.

The loyalist paramilitary ranks apparently leaked like a sieve, but on this occasion the information hadn't come from an informer but from a listening device in the home of one of the UDA's commanders.

After years of pandering to him, some of the UDA's leading figures had finally had enough and wanted him gone for good (Adair was a drug dealer at the centre of many loyalist feuds).

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