Strange hands afoot?

Make of this what you may. Greg Harkin in the Belfast Telegraph tonight, “The Stevens Inquiry has handed some of its most sensitive cases back to the PSNI, it emerged today. Thousands of pages of documents and other evidence covering several cases – including those relating to the IRA double agent Stakeknife – have been sent to the PSNI’s historic case review”.

However, Stevens sources say that some aspects of their investigation are still continuing. During his three inquiries in Northern Ireland-spanning 16 years-former Metropolitan Police Commissioner Lord Stevens has uncovered collusion between the security forces and both loyalist and IRA killers.

Lord Stevens began the third phase of his inquiry in 2000 when the then RUC Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan asked him to look at fresh material
about the 1989 UDA murder of solicitor Pat Finucane. But the inquiry quickly branched into other areas concerning the Army’s Force Research Unit and its agents inside loyalist gangs and the IRA. Kevin Fulton, a former soldier who infiltrated the IRA along the border for over a decade, met Stevens Inquiry officers today.

Allegations from Mr Fulton that he had been kidnapped and threatened by Stakeknife – republican Freddie Scappaticci – have now been passed back to
the PSNI for further investigation, said the ex-agent. ‘I am sceptical that this is now in the hands of the PSNI.” said Mr Fulton.

A Stevens source said Mr Scappaticci was on police bail and facing charges on a number of offences including involvement in the murder of fIRA informer
Joseph Fenton. He could also be charged in relation to the kidnapping of Fulton, and not, as previously reported, the abduction of another agent, Sandy Lynch.

Several other witnesses who had given evidence to the Stevens team, including ex-members of the security forces, have been told the inquiry is being wound up.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty