UVF protecting killers…

Daily Ireland reports accusations that the UVF is protecting the killers of Thomas Devlin in the Mount Vernon Estate.

  • Donnie

    This is a surprise to who exactly?

    Mick where has the wee jobby gone from the right hand side which showed the “hot topics” and number of comments on each?

  • The script we had was a left over from the old programme, and had begun to make the site unstable again.

    I’m planning to upgrade the site again at the weekend, and reinstate a newer version. Try and bear with us.

  • Crataegus

    What puzzles me is the hold these low life have on communities.

    I can think of nothing in Northern Ireland more important than breaking up these criminal gangs and convicting many of those involved.

  • Crataegus,

    No offense intended, but it is obvious from your comment that you have never lived in an area like Mount Vernon, or the Falls, or Shankill (or any working class area of NI).

    When you are living in area like this, you are living cheek by jowl with these people. You know them – and they know you and your family. You are not going to go to the police to make a statement about an incident like this – sooner or later, your name will become known to the paramilitaries, and then you and your family are at risk. I have been in positions where I have went to police with information in Belfast, where I am unknown to the local hoods, when I would never have dared going to the authorities back in my home town. Who wants to out their family at risk? This probably sounds weak to people unfamiliar with NI, but when you are seeing these scumbags everyday, when they are your neighbours, they loom very large in a person’s life. You would like to help the police catch these low-life hoods – but you daren’t.

    That was why the Confidential Telephone line was used during the Troubles, and why websites like http://www.lisadorrian.co.uk/ are important – they give people a chance to pass on information annoymously about these revolting murders, without risk to themselves or those around them.

  • Maybe detectives should ask local touts GH, RM, JB, WG or WY who murdered Thomas. Then again they could ask the fat fish.

  • Crataegus

    Andy

    You are very wrong on that score, painfully aware of Loyalist thugs and what they can do. Extreme direct personal experience.

    There are plenty of way of informing without disclosing your identity and I am sure many do but more should as these people are parasites. People have got to at least make an effort. The problem is that it is difficult to organise a prosecution based on such evidence, but having such evidence what surprises me is the seeming inability of the police to act decisively and round them up or pursue their assets. As I said previously I can think of nothing more important than ending ALL criminal gangs.

  • TAFKABO

    Crataegus.

    Why should people make an effort when the thugs are being wined and dined or invited to play golf by the highest in the land?
    When those that run this country make an effort, perhaps the people at the bottom will follow by example.

  • Crataegus

    Like I said, no offence was meant or intended. Sincere apologies if any was taken.

    But I stick by what I said. For the majority of people, there is a definite reluctance to raise your head above the parapet. I believe that more could (and should) be done to encourage people to do this. With the ceasefires, there has been a greater acceptance of the police in working class (paramilitary dominated) areas, and people are more willingly approaching them for help regarding ‘civil’ crime. But there is still a fear of the ‘tout’ label, used in a previous post, for anyone who informs regarding paramilitary crime.

    The Government have themselves seemed unwilling to push the issue of the paramilitary crime (the murder of Thomas Devlin and too many others) for fear of possible damage to the political process. With the McCartney murder and the Northern Bank robbery, this has became an untenable position. I do think this atmosphere has contributed to the fear of ordinary people to come forward.

  • Well done to all concerned as this is the first time I’ve seen a blog on a Daily Ireland news item where no-one has used it to slag off the paper itself. Is this the first sign of acceptance (albeit reluctant) by some of its biggest critics…?

  • Shore Road Resident

    Thanks for raising the subject…
    Keep your patronising ‘congratulations’ to yourself.

  • harpo

    ‘Daily Ireland reports accusations that the UVF is protecting the killers of Thomas Devlin in the Mount Vernon Estate.’

    They would say that, wouldn’t they?

    ‘Well done to all concerned as this is the first time I’ve seen a blog on a Daily Ireland news item where no-one has used it to slag off the paper itself.’

    I just saw this thread and have posted the comment above in this post. Sorry I didn’t get it in before your comment.

    As to your point, I must say that the DI does have a biased stance whereby it will gleefully report any accusation regarding loyalists at the drop of a hat, but usually heads straight to PSF HQ in a bid to ensure that it gets a prompt ‘republicans were not involved in this incident’ from some PSF rep when republicans clearly were involved in an incident.

    I don’t see any attempt to contact the PUP/UVF to get their view here in the way that they would attempt to get the ‘republicans were not involved quote’ from a PSF/PIRA rep. So there is no benefit of the doubt given. No Provo style ‘this may have been done by our members but it wasn’t an authorized operation’ quotes in this case. Just a straight ‘the UVF is doing this’.

    I seem to recall the same ‘media group’ spending weeks presenting all sorts of excuse stories when the PIRA was accused of being involved in the Tohill abduction. With even interviews of the victim himself saying that nothing happened. ‘Republicans weren’t involved’, ‘even if it was PIRA members involved, nothing happened’, ‘even if PIRA members were involved and something happened it wasn’t authorized’ were some of the angles gleefully followed up on the this media group. Full investigations. All sorts of benefit of the doubt given when republicans were accused of something.

    Odd then that then conclude on guilt so quickly in this case, isn’t it? But then loyalists are always guilty, aren’t they?

  • TAFKABO

    Macswinney.

    Is this the first sign of acceptance (albeit reluctant) by some of its biggest critics…?

    Even a stopped clock tells the correct time twice a day.

  • I’m not a big fan but DI are right in this case. Like I said before the touts in the Mount Vernon UVF arer well known – MH, WY, WG, JB, RM and the brigadier GH.
    Of course the cops know who did it – a man arrested was later charged with possessing ammo. What about the blood found on clothes uncovered in seacrhes at a flat lived in by the suspect. Why haven’t we heard anyhting about that.
    The Mount Vernon UVF and its links to Special Branch are starting to unravel. I’m looking forward to the ombudsman’s report into the McCord case

  • Dec

    Harpo

    Nice rant but if you bother to read the article, the accusation is made by Raymond McCord Snr. And as Mick wrote, Daily Ireland is merely reporting his remarks.

  • harpo

    ‘Nice rant but if you bother to read the article, the accusation is made by Raymond McCord Snr. And as Mick wrote, Daily Ireland is merely reporting his remarks.’

    As I said, did DI bother to explore the various possibilities as they would if ‘republicans’ were accused of something? Or did they just go to one person and quote him verbatim?

    For example in the O’Connor murder case, would this media group have sought out some PSF talking head to say ‘republicans weren’t involved’, or just have reported the claims of O’Connor’s family and left it at that? I think we know what they did in that case. Wall to wall coverage of every Provo denial available.

    So where’s the in depth balanced investigation here?

  • Crataegus

    TAFKABO

    I agree fully but unfortunately it is not the people at the top who suffer most by the actions of these people, it is those at the bottom. There comes a time when you have to say enough and no matter how little do what you can to change the climate.

    I would plead for anyone who knows anything about ANY criminal activity (Loyalist or Republican) to forward that information to the police. It could be an anonymous letter or the confidential phone line or the website, but do it. There is no other legal way of getting criminal gangs off your back. BUT take care and don’t put yourself at unnecessary risk. If you want to ensure anonymity do not use your own phone or computer. Do your civic duty but don’t trust anyone.

    No one expects martyrs, but we can all nudge things along a little.

    Andy

    No problem no offence taken.

    We actually probably agree I do understand the problems that you highlight.

    I think the problem is five fold;
    1.Obvious Government unwillingness to push the issue of the paramilitary crime.
    2.Perceptions of the Government buying of the perpetrators of crime and rewarding criminals.
    3.Suspicions of collusion.
    4.Perceptions of police ineffectiveness and accusations that this is in part linked to 3 above.
    5.The fear element and pier pressure within the communities.
    The people we are discussing are bullies, thugs, drug dealers, murderers and extortionists. We are not dealing with Professor Moriarty. So I cannot fathom why the PSNI has not been able to act more decisively against these people. This brings me back to allegations in relation to 3 above and the need for truth. If there was collusion better the truth than have this type of being use it to compromise you. We need to be able to move on. We need an effective Police Force supported by all, but it is impossible with such allegations.
    Equally you cannot make progress without the Government fully behind the need for Justice and not the need to appease. Plainly the Government agenda is opportunistic and unprincipled. It is not pragmatic it is plain sleazy.

  • Paul

    TAFKABO, you hit the nail right on the head. People living in those communities cannot trust the state to give them protection if they need it, they are on their own.
    DI “gaining acceptance”? I’m shocked to see them, and various Slugger regulars, relaxing their usually incredibly stringent burden of proof requirements before such matters can be discussed.
    What’s the world coming to?

  • Crataegus

    Paul

    I agree with you on the issue of proof. It is dangerous to be drawn into the specifics, but the topic enables us to raise the wider issues about communities terrorised by thugs generally.

    In my experience not enough is being done to root out the perpetrators of violence and crime and one has to ask why?

    I agree people in those communities are left on their own and that needs to end. It is the major failing of this whole peace process and erodes confidence in it.

    I often feel that those from Nationalist and Republican backgrounds don’t fully understand the Unionist perception on criminality. Unionists passionately want rid of ALL criminals and they are not specifically getting at Nationalists or Republicans, but feel utterly frustrated by what they see as a lack of willingness to fully cooperate in something so basic and essential. This helps drive a perception of Republicans that is not flattering. I wish some of the politicians here would gaze out of the trenches and see the bigger picture instead of chanting their own personal mantras. Forget the irrelevant petty points and egos and just get on with delivering good governance which is what they were voted in to do. (Therapy over for this week; utter frustration)

  • Crataegus

    I would agree with everything you have said, except for your point 4, Perceptions of police ineffectiveness and accusations that this is in part linked to 3 (suspicions of collusion) above. From my own view, I think that policing on the ground has improved in leaps and bounds over the past few years. The PSNI officers I have met are genuinely interested in serving the community – there is a ‘Can-Do’ attitude, as opposed to a ‘Can’t-Be-Bothered,-Don’t-You-Know-About-The-Troubles?’ attitude that was prevalent amongst RUC officers regarding ‘ordinary crime’. I say this as someone who lives in a Loyalist area of Belfast, so I realise not everyone will share this experience. The problem comes when people see the Governments pandering to the paramilitaries (both Loyalist and Republican). There doesn’t appear to be a committment to tackle paramilitary linked crime, and the people living in the affected areas are attuned to this, and still shy away from coming forward. Ultimately, I see this as a lack of political leadership. TAFKABO put it far better than I can when he said Why should people make an effort when the thugs are being wined and dined or invited to play golf by the highest in the land?

  • Crataegus

    Andy

    I am glad to hear that policing has improved and hope for a better future.

    Thugs wined and dinned and decent people marginalised, how did it ever come to this?